Have you ever had a time when God seemed to pull you to the side and whisper into your ear, "Let me show you something"? I had one of those moments today.
They are a bother to us. An annoyance in our day. It's the homeless man in Charlotte. It's the hitch hiker on the interstate. It's the pregnant teenager. It's the folks that are bringing down the property value in our neighborhood. You know the ones. The Mexican or Asian family down the street with 6 families and one car with no insurance. The crazy women that is always at the grocery store the same time I am. It's the trailer park crowd with the broken screen door and Buick on blocks in the drive. It's the hoodlums on the corner in the "bad" part of town. It's the guy that is always asking me for a ride. It's the old women that smells funny and really gives me the creeps. It's the crowd in the Emergency room when I really do have an emergency. It's the line outside the welfare office.
For us here it's the crowds outside our gate. It's the ones coming at 6 in the morning looking for food or begging for work. The throngs of single moms that don't take care of their children. It's the absent fathers that don't work. It's the swindlers. It's the beggars. It's the pimps. It's the prostitutes. It's the dirty. It's the smelly. It's the con men.
But they are so lucky we are here. Because since God made us smarter, and wiser, and Godlier, and better we can give them a "hand up". We can give them the stuff that we don't need any more. We can serve them some food at the homeless shelter and just our smile will light up their day. "It's the least I can do". I will make friends with one of them so that they will accept Jesus. He is the only hope "those people" have.
Before Joy left for the states we stopped beside the busy street in Port Au Prince to look at a local artisan's display of furnishings and vessels. He takes broken glass and tiles and makes tables and chairs and pots etc. Joy asked him to make her something out of broken mirrors. She showed him what she wanted and he happily agreed to do it. I passed by today and saw it hanging on the block wall by the road stopped to check it out.
It did not turn out like I had hoped. Several of the pieces of mirror were messed up and the dimensions were not like we had told him. I took a picture of the bad pieces of mirror to show Joy so she would know why I did not buy it from the guy. The street vendor. The peddler. The nuisance.
When I got home I went to look at the picture and that is when God pulled me aside. I had looked at the broken mirror before but when I got home God showed me the reflection of the man. His reflection was through the cracked mirrors. The missing pieces. The dirt on the surface. But God showed me that He sees us all that way. We are all broken. Cracked. Dirty. It turns out that there is not a scale of who's dirtier...or more broken...or more cracked. We are called to just love all of His cracked children.
You see that item Joy had the guy make was this cross. It was as though God was reminding me that we are to look at everyone in the reflection of the cross. We are to see His children as He sees them. We are to see them as Jesus saw them when He was on the cross. As precious. As valuable. As cherished. Each and every one. Yes, many are shattered. Bad choices. Bad relationships. Injustice. Corrupt governments. Evil people. A sinful world. But He loves them. More than we can imagine. When we see them in the reflection of the cross, it all changes!