The woman’s name was Rosa Parks, who was born 100 years ago this year, on 4 February 1913.
At 42 years old, Rosa Parks refused to move to the back of the bus, simply because she was black and the person wanting to sit down was white. This small act ignited the Civil Rights movement in the United States, which led to the end of the institutionalised segregation in the South.
Science talks about chaos theory, commonly referred to as the ‘butterfly effect’. It is said that when a butterfly flaps its wings in Africa, the wind generated ends up creating a hurricane in the Atlantic and destruction on the other side of the world. Small events can indeed cause big changes in the world! It was only a seat on the bus, but Rosa’s refusal to move started the Civil Rights movement.
The God whom we worship is one who specialises in taking small things and turning them into something big! A baby in a basket floating down a river became a leader who led his people out of slavery. A young shepherd placed a rock in a sling and slayed a giant. A quiet and talented girl named Esther bravely saved her race.
Fishermen doing their jobs heard the call of a Rabbi and transformed the world. Six jars of ordinary water became an abundance of fine wine at a wedding.
All of this reminds us that no act is too insignificant for God to use and demonstrate his glory. Are we open to those moments which God can use to create change in our world and the lives of those we meet? Will we help that person on the other side of the street or open our mouths when we feel God stirring our hearts to speak?
Like Rosa Parks, are we ready to make a stand?
Wherever we are?
Edited by Alan Tuddenham