pink house doorway upstairs

Who paints a house that shade of pink? I walked by it every day on my way to work. I couldn’t pass it without thinking about its similarity to the noxious liquid my mother made me drink when I had an upset tummy as a child. As if having that thick gunk sliding down my throat wouldn’t make me even more nauseated.

The only redeeming quality of the pink house was the wrought iron landings outside the tall windows.

If I lived there, I’d have a comfy chair to sit in and a little table for my coffee cup. I’d sit up there like a crow on a telephone wire and watch people walk by.

There was the man with the baseball hat, who walked to the corner shop every morning, returning ten minutes later eating a Snickers candy bar.

The woman pushing the double stroller always had a look of alarm on her face, as if she couldn’t believe she’d birthed not one, but two tiny human beings.

I’d get a good idea of where the homeless guy roamed after he hit me up for a few coins. I never made eye contact, never acknowledged his presence. I always thought he was dressed too well to actually be homeless. I figured he was too cheap to buy his own coffee and begged passersby for enough to fulfil his java fix. I could relate. What I couldn’t do was give him any of my precious money.

Unless I lived in that pink house. If I did toss the guy some money, I’d have to be rich as Elon Musk and wouldn’t have to slave away in a windowless office in the bowels of a downtown building. I’d even have someone to cook, clean, and bring me a refill of iced tea at my command.

And I’d definitely hire someone to paint the house a different color. Well, maybe I wouldn’t. Sometimes it’s good to be different.

As followers of Jesus Christ, we’re called to be different.

Different priorities – You can’t serve both God and money (Matthew 6:24)

Different thoughts – We have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16)

Different speech – Put away all filthy language from your mouth (Colossians 3:8)

Different love – You shall love the Lord your God and your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:37-39)

That’s a LOT of different. The point is, our differentness should stand out, just like the Pepto Bismol house. We’re different because once we’ve committed to following Jesus, we become aliens in this world.

There’s an old hymn that says, “This world is not my home; I’m just a-passing through.”

Where do YOU stand out? At work, at school, in the neighborhood, or at your kids’ soccer games?
How are you different? Let me know.

Jane S. Daly is the author of two nonfiction books and seven novels.

Jane is addicted to coffee, purple pens, and her husband, not necessarily in that order. A self-proclaimed introvert, she enjoys the solitude of riding shotgun in Rigsby, her 37-foot motor home. But when they pull into a new campground, her favorite thing is to make new friends and find hangouts featuring local musicians. Her fantasy involves writing lyrics for country music songs and hearing them played on the radio. In the meantime, she’ll stick to writing novels. And seeing as much of the country as possible.