Perspective is everything. Once upon a time I hoped for a career in architecture. Coming to Barcelona and seeing some of the world’s finest architectural features and hearing of strategic city planning for growth brought back memories. In high school we prepared a “perspective” drawing of our dream house. Each horizontal line found a relationship to a particular point or series of points on a vertical line. The reference point served as an “anchor” point from which the structure would be viewed.
I have taken quite a few pictures and would love to take hundreds more. I have shot taken from a cafe atop a massive department store where one may see the structures built to host the 1992 Summer Olympics. In another I am standing on the ground trying to take in the massive cathedral begun by Gaudi. Interesting side note – it is easy to see where we get “gaudy.”
For the last few days I noted pictures taken from the window of our hotel room as well as from the ground. The small photo in this post is from the street – one of the most trafficked streets in Barcelona. Each of the photos I have taken while from my camera are all taken from different perspectives; that is, different locations shooting the same thing.
It is easy to think that because of what I may read on the internet or in travel books I “get” Barcelona. However, there is something missing. I cannot get the feel without being on the “street.” I am grateful for a group of new friends who call this city home. They get the vibe. They understand the city from the street. No amount of reading can possibly replace such a view. For a couple of days they took us to the streets. Cafes, restaurants, alleys and streets became the means by which we would get a glimpse and hopeful grasp of just what kind of place is this historic city.
One thought keeps returning to me. What kind of presumptive people are we who pretend to know the plight of another from any other perspective other than the street. It is where life happens. For my life as a pastor is often laden with occasions to be on the street. If I should think I could grasp another from a travelogue or photoblog I make a tragic mistake. The view from the street is a “with” view.
When I think of the life of Jesus, I cannot help but think of life on the “street.” He gave us the “with” view. We who follow Jesus need the with view. Herein is the lesson we learn from those who give their lives to learn the “streets” of others to bring grace and hope.
Thanks friends. I have learned much.