I was speaking with a friend today. In light of Hilary Rosen’s recent remark about “Ann Romney hasn’t worked a day in her life”, we were discussing the role of work to worth; the role of pay to worth; and the role of contributing our gifts to others. In our culture in America, it is fairly common to assign worth based on money.People often decide if someone has value based on whether or not someone has a paying gig…(looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
A highly successful stock broker may have more prestige and worth than say a grill cook making minimum wage at McDonald’s. They certainly make more money. In a purchase-driven society, it is easy to believe that the richer you are the better you are. (looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
Of course, that can work against you, too. Again in our society it is often assumed that you are wealthy you are automatically selfish, and cannot understand what “real, regular people face”. and so the battle rages on between those two camps. (looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
The battle at times also revolves around teachers (one side saying they are underpaid and the other saying teachers already make too much for such a “part time job” [yeh, they say that] or that cops or fire fighters or garbage collectors already make too much. Or that this or that occupation makes too much/too little or pays too much/too little in taxes. ((looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
Ultimately the battle also then turns on a couple of other groups. These groups often go unmentioned, or maligned, or marginalized. Who? Ah! Those who [according to some of the aforementioned maligners] “never work”. (horrors and great loud tsk-ing taking place by some).(some of the aforementioned maligners frequently label these 2 groups as either lazy or moochers). (looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
who are these groups? The full time homemakers would be one of the groups. I wrote about them before. No, they do not make an income. But they contribute~they take care of the homefront and make a difference. They are worthy of respect.
There is another other group is also much aligned. That group is on permanent disability. Some are disabled due to an illness, or debilitating pain or paralysis; others are incapable of work because of a physical or even mental illness. Way too many people have become just plain cruel about the fact that this group “isn’t working”. (looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
However, this group is struggling just to make it from day to day and make it through their pain and suffering.
Many, many people assume that this group is lying, lazy, and just plain worth nothing. Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. Why is it that so much has become all about the money? Do we really want to say that the richer you are the better you are~when it comes to how valuable you are to society~ and at the same time say ‘the richer you are, the less compassion you have, and you should be brought down a peg? and do we want to sit around hollering at each other with jealousy and envy and calling each other selfish or lazy? It is a Star Bellied Sneetch Mentality, isn’t it? Do you remember that book about the psychology of envy?
There is so much more to life than the amount of money a person earns and or saves, or what ‘job related tasks’ they perform. Granted, those that have jobs contribute and have worth. But how wrong to say that those who do not have “paying jobs” are worthless… as a matter of fact: (looks like bullying, but it isn’t often called that).
How very crass and base to think that someone is worthless if they “are not working’. Can the elimination of child labor laws be far behind? Seriously! Jobs are good, but not the only way to contribute talent, love, inspiration to others. I think that as a blogger I have discovered a voice that I love to express. I have discovered other bloggers who give and give and give. Their writing, poetry, photography, etc are true gifts. They have found a way to share and give. Some people do this through their blogs and give us all so much encouragement, inspiration, and support as we search through our days.
Many bloggers helps us find our hearts, inspiration, and provide a lifeline to help us find our way to God and each other. These bloggers are invariably modest, talented, and loving. How do we define our worth? By how much we have loved others. And the love we give comes back to us in almost immeasurable ways. Remember when the Wizard of Oz gave the tin man his testimonial? Indeed, the Tin Man could be allegorical, couldn’t he? He lacked something (in his case physically)-but his loving ways added value to them all.
Whether you head out to a “job” on a regularly basis or not, you had better believe that you and those around you are uplifted by your presence and the sharing of your gifts. the world needs each of us. We each were put here to help bridge the gaps that separate us from each other and we MUST connect. That is really how we should define our worth. Whether it involves cash or not; whether it involves physical, mental, prayerful, or electronic travel or not….What are we worth? To God and each other, my friends, we are worth everything.
It is difficult enough at times to face the daunting conditions of illnesses or pain without others behaving in a demeaning way. I know from my past year of dealing with Bell’s Palsy that one can become ‘invisible’ in a hurry. Yet finding my voice, and finding each of you restored my heart in new ways. I am brave and so are you…..tomorrow I will right about courage…