I saw a picture today, under it was a sentence asking for “likes” for a page called “Right out of the Trailer Park” and it pictured a very rough looking woman who was dressed in a ridiculous outfit. I have heard comedians making fun of trailer park living, “cheap” people, someone a person doesn’t like or who act rude or are obnoxious in any way, are called “trailer park trash”. Can I say that I know of persons who have been raised in the lap of luxury, and are both rude and obnoxious, being rude and obnoxious are a personality trait that doesn’t have anything to do with where you live, right? Yes of course I am right!
I now live in a beautiful home on a gorgeous piece of property that is debt free, thanks be to God for giving me favor in that area, but let me go back a few years.
I was born to parents who were good, sincere, God-fearing, loving, ministers of the Word of God and serving people as pastor and evangelist who didn’t have two nickels to rub together. When I was born they took me home to the back room of the fellowship hall they lived in courtesy of the church they were working for at the time. When I was nine-months old they felt “the call” to go and evangelize, that is to preach, sing and generally minister to any church that would have them, and the only place we had to live, to keep from being housed in back rooms or spare bedrooms of congregants, was a small “Silver stream” trailer which had no bathroom. My dad hooked that trailer up in many small trailer parks in Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina. When I was four years of age that trailer was parked in a place that was near a water treatment plant and we were there for more than six weeks. If you live in Atlanta and have to travel down Atlanta Road to Bolton Road where the water treatment plant is you know what the smell is like, it is not very pretty and the problem was that my mother was pregnant with my brother so the smell only added to her reasons to be nauseous. There was a Coke machine at the front of the park and the Coca-Colas in it were ice cold, a blessing on a hot day for my mother, but as soon as she drank it, up it came, in the slop jar, which my dad faithfully emptied of all the waste of the family. When I was ten my dad took a church which, had been abandoned by the current pastor and had taken most of the congregation with him but left a huge amount of debt on that big brick church on the corner of Dodd’s Avenue in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The church couldn’t afford a parsonage so daddy purchased a sixteen-foot Airstream, the up-grade was that this one had a small bathroom, nice since mother was pregnant with my sister, and instead of being in a trailer park we were backed up to the church and he was able to hook into the church water supply so we had running water. Funny thing is that my brother nor I ever felt poor, we never had that mentality, my parents made it an adventure and we were doing it for the greater good of the church, for the people who couldn’t afford the church payments without hosting dinners every Sunday. I wonder if any of those people were ever thankful for what my parents did for them? Not that it matters because their aim was to please God, not man…as a kid I can’t say I shared their enthusiasm.
I think that my brother, sister and I have turned out rather well. We are all upstanding citizens that are neither rude, nor obnoxious, we are registered voters, and the only time we look rough is when we wake up in the morning, speaking only for myself now. There is nothing wrong with providing your family a place to live in a place where you can afford to live and if that is a trailer park then good for you!
Every single time I hear one of those wise cracks or see one of those pictures I feel affronted and I am tired of hearing it made fun of and put down.
That being said, let me ask you to be kind to every person you meet even if they are not kind to you, you don’t know what life at home is for them and your smile might just be the only one they see all day. If you deem yourself a Christian, a child of God, someone who emulates Him and His goodness, then remember this:
1 John 4: 7-10 My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn’t know the first thing about God, because God is love—so you can’t know him if you don’t love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about—not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they’ve done to our relationship with God.
God is love and if He came to earth again instead of a stable in Bethlehem He might just be born and raised in your local trailer park!