Here's something from the archive, 1998 to be exact. Enter Steve, guy I used to see every day when I worked at a video arcade in the mall. Steve was a short, precious soul, who'd come in daily to check the coin returns of video games for spare change. Steve was probably in his mid sixties when I met him, and always dressed the same: blue sweatshirt and baggy blue jeans. I drew this picture of him one night when I went to the mall with my sketch book.
From the moment I met Steve, he always had stories.
Sad stories: The first time I really talked to him, he told me he buried his son that day.
Outlandish stories: He told me he owned a yacht.
Scary stories: He told me several times about being attacked by a dog that gave him his limp and foot injury. Not sure if Steve was mentally ill or not.
Steve had a small posse of daily mall people he hung with. There was Franky, the older fellow with some huge mutton chops who like to hit regularly on all the young girl mall employees. There was John, a man who used to move in slow motion, without facial expression, with totally slicked hair. Then there was another tall, middle-aged guy with thick chunky hair who smelled like nicotine incarnate. (I can't remember his name.) To talk with him face to face was to second hand smoke though.
I found out recently that Steve died about a year and a half ago. He had a heart condition.
If Christianity is true, than the Steves, the Frankys, the Johns, the nicotine guys of the world matter to God. Matter to Christ.
I would do well to pay more attention to them.
The load or weight, or burden of my neighbor’s glory should be laid on my back, a load so heavy that only humility can carry it, and the backs of the proud will be broken. It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you say it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations.
—C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory