New York City Summer Project

Lavish lifestyle

Today my roommates and I spent a really great day living the life of brunches and shopping on 5th Avenue. And it was a blast. You should follow me on instagram if you’d like to vicariously live through me as some of my friends have already requested. (@sl_winkler)

But I started thinking a lot about where we as a society find our value.

As if the Tiffany and Co. employee scoffing at my lack of justifying an $85 purchase for a change purse wasn’t enough, I ran into a familiar face on the 4 train.

Over spring break, a homeless man looked me straight in the eye and, with a broken spirit, repeated the word “please.”


And because I’ve always been taught to ignore people like this, I did. And I’ve regretted it ever since.

Today I saw him again. And I was reminded of that time I came to New York on a mission trip and chose to put myself above another person because they weren’t worthy of my time or money.

I can pretend all I want. But unfortunately no matter how many things I own or how expensive my shoes are, I’m still just as broken as everyone else.

I can’t believe how much value I give to material things. Like I think certain things I own have more value because they’ve been certain places. My suitcase, for example, traveled to Greece and Italy. I felt really cool every time I saw those luggage tags. I thought Wow. That has been to Europe.

But so have I. I took it there. So why is my value in the suitcase rather than the actual experience I had of going there?

Maybe that’s a bad example because it definitely took money to get to Europe. But I digress.

My value is in the suitcase because society taught me my worth is in what I own and how much I own. My value is in whether or not I can afford to shop in the 2 carat diamond case at Tiffany or buy the really super cute $500 trunk from Kate Spade. (In case you’re confused, I can’t do either of those things.)

As much fun as it was to pretend to be an upper class citizen, at the end of the day, I’m still a college student unable to support myself. So shout out to mom and dad for helping me stay alive.

Anyway. If I’m going to be here for a month trying to show people how great Jesus is, maybe I should start acting like it. And that involves humility. It will mean looking at other people the way God sees them. Meaning, they are just as important as I am and I have no authority to look down on anyone.

So I’m gonna start now. I’m gonna ask you to pray for me so I can work on this. Because I’m not good at it. And it is taking a lot of my pride to even ask that.

Also pray for the homeless here. There are too many people on the streets in this city, and as much as I wish I could buy all of them dinner and apartments, I can’t.

And keep praying for New York. Just because I love it and want the best for it.

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