It was time to head to the airport. As I stood in front of the hotel waiting for a Ford Fiesta, my eyes were drawn to a beautiful grey Bentley. In a city where the estimated median income is less than $4,000/year, this car represented the total yearly income of 100-200 individuals.
I admit I love cars. I was brought up in a family that loves cars. The feelings were imprinted on me well before I had any choice in the matter. In my opinion, the Bentley is an amazing machine. Huge, opulent, and powerful are the first words that come out of my mouth when I try to describe it. Even as I form the sounds, my mind thinks of rich leather, wonderful wood trim, and massive amounts of horsepower under the bonnet (hood).
A Bentley is an amazing machine. I can see its place in the UK, Europe, and even big cities like New York. When I think of India, I have no idea why anyone would have a Bentley in Chennai. The roads are crowded. The traffic is difficult, even for a Fiesta. Motorcycles, auto rickshaws, small vans weave in and out without regard for safety or property. Parking is limited to start with and what is covered is usually small.
As I looked at the car I could not help but think of justice. How many workers gave of their time and lives to create the wealth that made this possible? I could not imagine what the person who made a decision to buy and bring the car to this town was thinking?
I could imagine the worker on the street. As he looked to one of the Hindu gods, to Mary, or to Allah, I could hear the words, “Do what you think is right, God, my God, but don’t make me pay for their good time.” (Psalm 35.24)
I know life is rarely fair. I also know that you and I can make a difference in how justice is realized. God willing, at least one person will sense that today.