An island of misfits

I am a 100% certified and authentic, legitimate misfit. I think misfits come in a lot of shapes, sizes, and even colors. Some are verbally loud, while others are quiet and timid. However, I do believe there are a lot of misfits out there, but guess what? In case you didn’t know, I am probably one of the highest-ranking misfits you would ever meet. Do you believe me?2014-06-23 17.54.58-2Seriously. I mess up. I make mistakes. I have hearing aids and a speech problem, even though people think I sound like someone with some strange accent from another country other than the one in which I was born. Of course, living in South America for 14 years has also added to the adventure of attempting to speak English/Spanish well and sometimes what comes out is a lovely mix of the cliquey phrase, “Spanglish.”

A misfit typically is one who doesn’t seem to fit in to the best of society’s demands or also has been defined as one who has been thrown out and no longer loved. Misfits, like the ones who lived on the Island of the Misfit Toys that had some King who loved them in the beautiful story of the Rudolph cartoon that I watched growing up as a boy every year at Christmas. They had long, drawn-out voices that dragged their sad weepy story of how they had been left on this wretched place because no one wanted them anymore. Guess what? A few weeks ago, someone who said they felt like a misfit too connected with me, or myself with the other misfit, but nonetheless, we had the opportunity to discuss our mutual “misfit” feelings. Something magical happens when you meet someone who is also a self-labeled misfit. There is an identification, a similar sense of understanding that the journey through life is not always the most incredibly painted pathway led with red- and pink-colored roses, rather one that has roses yes, but is prickled with some thorns here and there. In reality, whether we get it or not, all of us at some point in our lives have experienced the island of misfit tragedy.
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Children who live in the rock mines of Lima and slave away all day long just to have food to eat certainly feel like misfits. They have either been sold into the slave trade, or have gone into the trade for food, most likely with a feeling of despair.

Through the experiences of serving and being in an incredible place to learn about others, I have met others who have felt like misfits. I know that some of my closest friends in Ventanilla, where poverty strikes with vicious venom, feel like misfits, pushed off from Lima’s exclusive society. Some of them are older and some are younger, nonetheless the feeling of being pushed off affects each in different ways. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to talk with a little girl, who by the world’s society of cold hard wealth, would be considered a misfit; however, in the eyes of a grand world of love, compassion, and hope, she is a miracle of pure humanity.

Being considered a misfit in the eyes of society only truly means that you are an undercover precious gem that sparkles with more joy, compassion, and peace than the superficially false superstars that shine glimmers of dwindling embers.

The journey is always a challenge, but always worth it to live on the edge to bring hope, healing, and an opportunity for a better future. I would never trade being a misfit for anything in the world. I would rather live the life of a misfit, knowing that God loves, cherishes, and is proud, than to glitter in the limelight of some false spotlight that is only shining for the moment. What an opportunity to know that eternity is secure when we thrive on the protection, strength, and empowerment of the One who created us to be exactly how we are.

A misfit in this world only means cherished in the next. I look forward to meeting more misfits along the journey. Because of their authenticity, the journey is so much richer, purer, and joyful.

To help others who are considered to be misfits, I encourage you to check out a campaign in which hope is found and dreams are made into reality. Today. Check out how you can help change the perspective and bring wholeness to the life of one person. Or 100.