I had never been to Hollywood Blvd. before, but I thought I knew what to expect on my first visit. Images from films, stories from friends and family–I knew that the streets were lined with stars with famous actors, musicians, and directors. I knew about the “Chinese Theater” that has the handprints of celebrities in the cement out in front. To me, Hollywood Blvd. seems to be where the heart of LA lies. It is the attraction of this walk of fame that brings us to its streets filled with shops and movie theaters so grand they host Hollywood premiers.
But, what surprised me, as I was looking excitedly at the names of the various stars, were the people who lived on Hollywood Blvd: The Hollywood homeless. There were numerous homeless people on the very sidewalks that we use to honor the legacy of our film, television, and radio”stars.”
Walking up and down Hollywood Blvd and seeing the names of the stars next to a homeless person on the street brought me to a place of humility.
Was I part of the problem? Why do I look to honor the “stars” anyway? Why should they receive more of my attention than any of the homeless–much less the store owners and workers, restaurant workers etc. on that very same street? As I continued down Hollywood’s walk of fame my eyes were drawn to familiar actors, directors, and singers. But I also noticed the stars that were empty (waiting to have a name inscribed) and I couldn’t help but think that the homeless men and women living on that street deserved their name on the sidewalk. Perhaps, more so than the actors and actresses. After all, they are the ones that live on Hollywood Blvd. Why not honor each of them? Not with just a name in a star, but love, compassion, shelter, and understanding. With all the wealth in Hollywood, why wasn’t there an effective charity that impacts these streets?
What do we mean by “star”? A star shines brightly in the night. It’s magnifying light contrasts with dark night. Stars are put on pedestals–they are considered to be higher than the “Average Joe “. But where do their talents for singing, acting, directing, come from?
Do they not come from God?
Shouldn’t the credit be given to Him?
So often the Maker of Man is left out of the equations. And what is God’s perspective on Hollywood’s walk of fame?
I’m not sure myself…however, I don’t think that we are to place one another above each other. The Bible, in contrast to making a name for ourselves, encourages unity by humility. Philippians 2:3 reads:
Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.
Romans tells us that” all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” ( Romans 3:23) Thus, no one is greater except the name of Jesus.
The homeless that live on Hollywood Blvd. are made in God’s image and are of equal value in God’s eyes to the ones we honor with their names in stars on the street. I hope that when we visit the walk of fame that we would not ignore those that need our help that live on those very streets. They need our help and support. Many of these people had dreams of stardom themselves. Dreams that brought them to Hollywood only to leave them broken and empty-handed. Even though they didn’t succeed in Hollywood, they are of no less of importance in God’s eyes. Because in God’s eyes we are all the same.
In God’s eyes we are all the same. We were made in his image and we are all his children.