In Discovering Jesus in the Least, you’ll walk alongside veteran outreach worker, Chris Ramsey, as he uncovers the depths of God’s love not only for the “most overlooked and ignored” folks in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood . . . but also for himself.
Ramsey welcomes the reader into his world through a wide variety of short, poignant observations amassed over 25 years. What he discovers will undoubtedly challenge you to examine your own views regarding the poor and the homeless of our 21st century American society.
Chris Ramsey’s Blog
SHE’S GOT ONE WORD FOR US: “HALLELUJAH”
This wonderful lady, Huyen Nguyen, has been a kind-hearted soul towards Cornerstone for many years. She tells me that she appreciates so much all the food she receives from our food pantry and soup kitchen.
She came to Chicago in 1995, and has lived here ever since. She says she has some family back in Vietnam, but that she has only been back to visit once since she arrived in Chicago.
Huyen does not speak much English, so it is not easy to communicate with her. But her smile and her sincerity spoke volumes. And when I asked her about her faith, her first response was to raise her hands and unashamedly proclaim, “Hallelujah!”
She then showed me pictures of her with her church choir.
Now most of us have heard the word, Hallelujah, before. It’s meaning being, “Praise (ye) the Lord—used to express praise, joy, or thanks.”
And many of us will be familiar with Handel’s Messiah. And particularly the “Hallelujah Chorus” when the King of Kings and Lord of Lords finally gets his due. The lyrics soar when any choir sings, “And He shall reign forever and ever Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Halle-lu–jah!”
And as we look into God’s word (Revelation 19:1-9) we discover that there is a “great multitude in heaven” who are rejoicing so exuberantly that they include three “Hallelujahs!” in the space of nine verses!
And why is this multitude so radiant with praise and thanksgiving? It’s because what they’ve waited for for so long has now come to pass. “For our Lord God Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. (Rev. 19: 6b-7)
And I’d like to make just one, simple observation. It seems to me that this sister has no problem with getting a “head start” on the multitudes.
And why is this? It seems she already knows her “Jesus” is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. And because of this assurance, she does not hesitate to express her thanks to her Lord… right now, right here on earth.
The only question is,“Are we joining in with her… now?” If we are not, maybe we ought to ask ourselves, what’s holding us back?
Thanks for stopping by. Chris
A CLASH OF CULTURES…OR THE LANGUAGE OF HEAD-GEAR?
Hello all my Jesus in the Least friends: Sorry, it’s been a while since I’ve posted. But here is a poem by my late friend Curt Mortimer, who went home to be with Jesus in November 2016.
Check out his poem which paints a beautiful picture of how the “interaction” between the cultures of Uptown, Chicago CAN go.
B y Curt Mortimer
My hat and me was simply
Walking down Wilson Avenue
Minding my own business
When my hat said…
Well, now you gotta know
My hat ain’t got no mouth
So it looked like I said
Cause it was movin my lips , you see
Well it said… Aaah…I said
To a big brother
With a dew rag
Sup, he said
What is sup? asked the hat
Hangin, said the dew rag
Wha’d the cowpoke do?, The hat
Ain’t no cows in Uptown, man, said dew
Ain’t no trees either, pardner, said the hat
How yagonna hang the outlaw?
We’all is gangstas, said dew
You want a death play,
We got a way
Just stand on down there on the corner
And then I grabbed my hat
Wait, wait, I said
This thing is gonna get me dead
My friend, I’m sure you see
That I don’t wear the hat,
The hat wears me.
Yo man, said the brother
I got the same kind of bother
Every time I doff my dew
You know what I’m sayin?
I feel like a gang banger
Out lookin for danger
Ah’m just a nice young homie
That loves ta write poetry
I knew, says I, I knew
By that “doff my dew” line
So off we went
Up there on Broadway
To the Chicago Coffee House
Just across from Blockbuster
Ah-ite, said my brother
All right , said I.
This poem was reprinted from Curt Mortimer’s collection of poetry entitled, Mudblood. Copyright 2010.
Thanks for stopping by. Chris.