Today I'm linking up with Kate Motaung for Five Minute Friday. This week's prompt is "REFINE."
Downton Abbey ended a year ago, and I'm still missing it. I loved that show. I still re-watch old episodes so that I can go back into that world again. I felt like the Crawleys and their staff were my friends, and sometimes I have this sense that they're still all out there going on with their lives, only without billions of pairs of eyes watching them.
The Crawleys were so refined. The women would come down to dinner in gorgeous, decadent dresses, dripping with jewelry. They'd sit straight-backed, their wrists (never their elbows) resting elegantly on the edge of the table.
And those voices! I loved their sophisticated English accents. If you want a good laugh, CLICK HERE to see a clip of Downton Abbey actors reading their lines in American accents. It's pretty hilarious to see Lord Grantham as an American mogul, pontificating to his kids about properties and acquisitions .... on second thought, let's change the subject.
It's so easy to get starstruck by elegant people. Their beautiful houses, sophisticated clothing, refined manners ... they must be doing something right. They must be just a bit better than the rest of us.
But the truth is, we're all equal. No one is better than anyone else because of their status, their inheritance, their possessions, or their refined manners. This Irish song that I love, "John O'Dreams," reminds us that at the end of the day -- or the end of life -- we are all on the same level ground:
Both man and master in the night are one;
All things are equal when the day is done.
The prince, the ploughman, the slave, the free man
All find their comfort in old John O'Dreams.
The Bible also reminds us of the surprising humility of Jesus:
Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. (Philippians 2:5-7, The Message Bible)
It's fun to immerse myself in the world of the rich and refined for a while, but my comfort comes in knowing that the trappings of wealth and power are not what matter to God. He is a friend to the poor, the weak, the lonely, the powerless. He became one of us to prove that.