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Monday, April 26, 2021

Trickle Down Kindness

Oh, to be rich. So rich that you can walk away from royalty. And still make plenty of moola.

So rich that you can escape to anywhere in the world you wish and leave the problems of others behind. So rich that you can avoid prison time or serious fines because of the influence your wealth affords. So rich that your children can attend the finest of schools and are taught by the world’s best educators. So rich that you can afford to be rude to others and they still must treat you like the king or queen you pretend to be.


We would all benefit by having our eyes opened a bit more to the reality of working with the wealthy. A recent Huffington Post article articulates the pathetic nature of this well. It’s titled, “I Work in a Ritzy Restaurant and I've Seen Some Unbelievable Behavior During COVID.”

What we learn from the writer is exactly what we expect. She lives in a wealthy ski community, but not in any extravagance. Her place is a simple studio apartment. She works in a restaurant helping create “a luxurious dining experience for the guests who walk through our door.” And make no mistake, these guests are among the super-wealthy of our world.

The patrons where she’s employed have frequently asked for more than they should. But the pandemic made things worse. One middle-aged woman was seated in an outdoor tent created so the establishment could stay open amidst restrictions. Apparently, the disgruntled customer said she didn’t care “for the ambience” where she was seated. Our server found her an inside corner table. The diamond bearing “queen” instead asked for something unattainable – a center area placement. When told that was not possible because of restricted seating, she and her mate walked out the door.

Our “always try to please” server said many of her guests fail to make eye contact as they make their demands. Some drop names of celebrities they know to get favors. Or they’ll ask for “the best table in the house,” presumably because they deserve it! She notes one customer threatened to get her fired. The poor man’s drinks weren’t strong enough and he knew the resort owner, a fact he used to try and intimidate her.

When serving at private functions, the host and guests often failed to do the basics to keep the virus away. Obeying the county, state, or federal mandates didn’t seem to apply to them. After all, they’re rich! As one couple dined outside, one fur-coat-draped woman got cold, prompting her husband to offer a bribe to the server to seat them inside–against all policies.

There were plenty of other examples. But to be fair, our oft-mistreated server explained that she had an ample share of gracious and concerned well-to-dos. And during the worst of times, several left extravagant tips and asked how she was faring in life. Wealth does not need to come with arrogance or lack of caring.

A few of her concluding observations:
  • “I’d like to think this pandemic might teach us all something about humility; that we might be humbled by the unpredictable way this virus has shaken our lives.”
  • “I’m thankful to have had a job during the pandemic ― I know many people did and still do not.”
  • “I’m choosing instead to focus on the generosity and empathy I’ve witnessed some of our other guests offer. They’ve inspired me to make my own much smaller acts of giving when I can. Maybe that will set off a kind of trickle-down kindness.”
Wealth and power can breed some bad habits. Perhaps why Proverbs 30:8 makes this bold request, “Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread.” (NIV)

Oswald Chambers said, "The most exacting test of all to survive is prosperity."

I think we need more biblical wisdom to trickle down. 

That’s Forward Thinking. Click on the link to the right to connect via Facebook.

You can find a number of YouTube episodes and podcasts of Mark’s program, Moving People Forward at

For more information on the Elfstrand Group, please visit

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