In his book “Jesus in the Margins: Finding God in the Places” Rick McKinley writes that “Jesus is our ultimate model for finding identity, acceptance, and legitimacy from the Father. As we pull back the curtain on His life, we discover that Jesus knows what it’s like to be marginalized. He understands how it feels to have society shove you to the side, to not really be accepted, and in the end to be totally rejected. He can identify with life in the margins because when God came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ, He landed in the margins on purpose. And He chose to land there because it’s in the margins that broken lives get mended, prisoners are set free, and the poor hear the Good News.” When we all focus on the small or even seemingly little things everyone seem to neglect in society, we become seeds that can distribute God’s unfailing love to others.
To many people think the marginalized are usually those that have no social status and possessions. But we need to redefine our views and accept that the marginalized are anyone who does not have Christ or His kingdom. The intention to our giving is therefore more important than the attention of our doing. “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin” (Zech. 4:10 NLT). God’s also in the small things. When he had to redeem the world He gave a seed so the Savior would come. In some cases he defeated a nation with one man like Samson. He allowed a stone from a boy to slain Goliath and he used an ant to describe the importance of being sluggish. The picture is clear; God wants you to do what He want, even when it is small and seemingly insignificant to others. Mother Teresa tells the following story that gives a good picture of this. “Some of my sisters work in Australia. On a reservation, among the Aborigines, there was an elderly man. I can assure you that you have never seen a situation as difficult as that poor old man’s.
He was completely ignored by everyone. His home was disordered and dirty. I told him, “Please, let me clean your house, wash your clothes, and make your bed.” He answered, “I’m okay like this. Let it be.” I said again, “You will be still better if you allow me to do it.”He finally agreed. So I was able to clean his house and wash his clothes. I discovered a beautiful lamp, covered with dust. Only God knows how many years had passed since he last lit it I said to him, “Don’t you light your lamp? Don’t you ever use it?” He answered, “No. No one comes to see me. I have no need to light it. Who would I light it for?” I asked, “Would you light it every night if the sisters came?” He replied, “Of course.” From that day on the sisters committed themselves to visiting him every evening. We cleaned the lamp, and the sisters would light it every evening. Two years passed. I had completely forgotten that man.
He sent this message: “Tell my friend that the light she lit in my life continues to shine still.” I thought it was a very small thing. We often neglect small things.” What a lesson to us! The sisters of Charity was faithful to the small, they did not relinquish the poor man from his condition, rather they gave what truly mattered and was marginalized, pure love and acceptance. What a lesson to us. To find God in the margins.