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
I DON’T HAVE A PROBLEM WITH THAT…
AND NEITHER DOES JANICE (aka Sister Pattie)
OR SOMEONE IN SCOTIA, NEW YORK
I was riding around my hometown of Scotia, NY with my wife, Sandy. I had just recently attended my 50th high school reunion. Now that was a “trip”—in a good way—and I’ll be happy to share some more that another time. I was satisfied to cruise by my family’s old houses, and just think back on 50+ years ago and how life was for me growing in the 50’s and 60’s. Of course, a lot had changed, but then again a lot had not.
Anyways, on our site-seeing jaunt we ran into this garage on the side of the street and it had, “It’s All About Jesus!” proudly displayed for all to see… and ponder.
Now this proclamation was not new to me. Indeed, it had been humbly modeled and repeatedly announced by a dear sister that I got to know many years back. And her “witness” had touched me so much that I just had to write about it. And it is a story that is found in my book, Discovering Jesus in the Least. The following is reprinted from the book.
There’s this one sister who puts a smile on my face nearly every time I
see her. Maybe that’s because she always had a smile on her face.
Janice was a humble, sweet lady, who carried herself with a lot of poise
and dignity. But it did appear as if she was just caught up in another universe.
I mean, she would hear whatever it was that you said, but it didn’t seem to
matter much to her.
In any case, this sister would come by to visit intermittently, whenever
she felt led. And the one utterance that would spring from Janice’s lips more
often than not was: “It’s all about Jesus!” It became her mantra, and it soon
became mine whenever our paths would cross.
One day we were short-handed on the serving line, so I asked her if she
wouldn’t mind helping to serve the food to our guests. She readily agreed,
and joined right in with our other volunteers. As each person made their
way through the serving line, many of them were greeted with “It’s all about
Jesus!” as they were receiving their food.
As I was watching her I felt a little uneasy, thinking, “Oh no, did I make
a mistake? Maybe her approach is going to turn folks off.”
But then I continued to observe the reactions of most of our guests.
Frankly, most folks didn’t seem to pay much attention to her mantra. They
were just happy to receive some food, and move on down the line.
But I’m sure she also received her share of mixed reactions. In other
words, some would’ve readily agree with her mantra, and offer an affirmative
response. Others, in all likelihood, were not so amused. And some were
undoubtedly more than a little irked at this sister’s seeming insensitivity.
Not one to get overly concerned, I chose to just sit back and think about
the profundity of what she was saying.
To be sure, I agree with her that it really is “all about Jesus!” And so, if “it”
really is all about Jesus then what’s wrong with expressing our beliefs—even
if it’s done in an unconventional manner or at an unexpected moment? If the
lady’s tone is sincere and humble, and she’s just being herself—I mean, I don’t
think I have a problem with that.
And I can guess who else doesn’t have a problem with it. After all, Jesus,
said it referring to himself in so many different ways. He was declaring in
no uncertain terms: “It’s all about me!” (See John 8:12, 11:25, 14:6, to cite
a few examples)
And so, if this is true, then Janice’s way of praising his being will be more
than welcome. For myself, I freely admit that I’d much rather hear this truth
proclaimed from this sister’s lips than from almost anyone else. When she
says it, I believe it a little more so.
And here’s a pic of “Sister Pattie” that was on her memorial service notification.
Just another fine example of “the least” teaching us exactly “Who” it’s all about.
Thanks for stopping by.