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Fake or Real?

I drive by a business area that is getting a "face lift"--a new facade is being constructed around the building. As they are scraping it, the old signs are visible again, shops of bygone times--but it won't last long, and everything will be bright and beautiful again. A fake facade will cover up all the history, all the imperfections and the rough spots. The complex will look stunning in no time and nobody will know what is behind it.

I wonder what my life looks like? Some days I put on the make up, wear the nice clothing, have on a bright smile and have a perfect facade on. You won't see that my heart is breaking over the injustice, that I have a vision and a dream, or that I am angry because I feel snubbed, or that I just had an amazing time with a friend.

You might have to look closer, might have to actually look behind the facade to see what is really there.

When I take time to hear stories I get a glimpse behind the facade of people. I get to see the rough spots, the imperfection, the beauty that is lying hidden behind the paint.

Today I had a couple of those experiences. There is the 70+ year old woman who is helping me--who has an amazing story to tell of a bygone war, of being part of a family of 14 children, of sleeping with 4 or 5 in one bed, and learning to care for each other. She is reading a book for me, Working With the Poor, and gave a wonderful synopsis of what she has studied. She wrote that poverty is a terrible situation, but that by working together and teaching skills from an early age we can all do a part. On the outside she might look like a "wrinkled old lady", but behind the facade of age is an active mind, great ideas and amazing stories.

Then there is the friend who has kept a secret for a long time and was finally willing to let it go. What braveness! What courage! When you look at her you don't see that--but if you listened to her you would be amazed.

Then there is the friend who is struggling with depression and chronic pain, but who has so much energy to love people, to show compassion and care. On the outside the facade would show one thing--but behind it--oh my!

There are amazing people I encounter if I am willing to look behind the facade.

So the next time you see someone --wait for the facade to come down--you might find something amazing!

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