Author: Beth Johnson

Many of the posts from my Facebook friends are asking for prayers as they themselves or their children prepare to take final exams.  It reminds me of this quote from CHRIST OF THE AMERICAS by Henri Nouwen about preparing for the biggest exam of all.

“The coming again of Christ is his coming in judgment. The question that will sound through the heavens and the earth will be the question that we always tend to be deaf to. Our lives as we live them seem like lives that anticipate questions that will never be asked. It seems as if we are getting ourselves ready for the question ‘How much did you earn during your lifetime?’ or ‘How many friends did you make?’ or ‘How much progress did you make in your career?’… Were any of these to be the question Christ will ask when he comes again in glory, many of us in North America could approach the judgment day with great confidence.

But nobody is going to hear any of these questions. The question we all are going to face is the question we are least prepared for. It is the question: ‘What have you done for the least of mine?'”

It is a question we should prepare for diligently.  First, we need to ask ourselves who are “the least of mine,” the marginalized in our everyday environment.  We might not come across an immigrant or a homeless person in our normal routine.  Encountering them might take special effort.  But do we come across a co-worker who is made fun of because her clothes do not quite measure up to what everyone else is wearing?  Or a neighbor who is avoided because she tends to go on and on about how wonderful her children are?

Once we have identified these people whom we are push to the margins for whatever reason, then we need to hear Jesus ask us, “What are you doing for this least of mine?”