The Little James Crisis
So who is Little James?
A Little Bit of Background
He was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. And in many translations of Church documents, he’d also been called James “the Minor,” “the Younger,” or “the Lesser.”
Did Little James in the Bible have a disability?
Interestingly, in The Chosen, a multi-season show about the life of Jesus, Little James is portrayed as someone born with some form of paralysis. Apparently, this characterization is one of Jenkins’ creative freedom for the show. There are no historical or biblical records confirming that the actual Little James the apostle had a malady.
In an interview, both Dallas Jenkins (The Chosen director) and Jordan Walker Ross (Little James) confirmed that the unique character profile of the apostle came only after the casting. Jordan said that he has severe scoliosis and minor cerebral palsy, which Dallas didn’t notice during the auditions. Instead of recasting and letting the actor go, Dallas and Jordan just agreed to integrate the limp into the character. That move made a profound impact on the show as it added a deeper layer into the character of Little James, especially his internal and external struggles.
So What’s With the “Little James Crisis”?
Before I continue, I just have a fair warning to all those who haven’t watched The Chosen yet, especially the second episode of Season 3. I’m going to drop a spoiler here!
The show’s second episode of Season 3 is where Jordan’s limp and The Chosen being a Jesus show fit beautifully together. It is inclusion and representation at its finest! In that episode, Jesus sent his disciples “two by two,” pairing Little James with Big James. Considering the weight of Jesus’ task and in the presence of taller, bigger, and more confident James, Little James felt a little insecure and overwhelmed.
In many ways, Little James represents all of us. Whether we realize it or not (whether we like it or not), we all have our own kind of limp. We tend to compare ourselves to others. We focus on our weaknesses. Still, Jesus embraces us. Flaws, limps, quirks, and all.
As a Christian trying to serve God and his Church, how many times do we tell ourselves:
I’m not good enough.
Other people can do it better.
What if I can’t do it?
I need to do this first so that I can be better at doing (blah, blah, whatever we need to do).
The “Little James Crisis” is something very relatable. And it stops us from offering ourselves fully to God. It’s anchored on insecurity and frustrations. But like Little James, may we also find the humility to ask for “a moment with the Master” and present our crisis to Jesus the Consoler.
What’s Inspiring About “The Meek and Short Little James with a Bit of a Limp” Character
I’m not really sure if you’ve asked yourselves those questions. But personally, I had those “Little James Crisis” every day. When all around me looks perfect, I can’t help but reflect on my own flaws. So even if Little James’ limp is merely an invention, it’s consolation enough for me. It is a call to acceptance – of my shortcomings and God’s grace. Most importantly, it helps me discover and appreciate my place in the world.
It inspires me to…
console others despite my own sadness
care for others while not expecting too much
make room in my heart for love
to find joy in the healing and happiness of others while waiting and suffering in silence
allow my heart to be broken so that I’d have the capacity to empathize with the brokenness of others
always stand on the fact that my life and everything that I have are God’s gifts
share the stories God entrusted me to tell
be at peace and happy in God above all.
Indeed, my wounds and flaws aren’t there without reason. In the greater scheme of things, it’s part of who I am and what I can (or need to) share to others.
The “Little James Crisis” Scene and How It’s Solved
Here’s the clip showing the crisis of Little James and how Jesus solved it. Yes, the video isn’t in HD. So make sure to view the full show on the Angel Studios site or app for full HD quality. You might also like to listen to Jordan Walker Ross’ “What’s Your Limp?” podcast on Apple Podcasts. I don’t get anything (e.g., commissions, links) from promoting these materials. I just find these helpful and inspiring. So feel free to browse (or not ).
Written by Jefanie Genilla. Jef has been serving in Pure Heart Philippines since 2018. This post was originally published on her personal blogsite, www.pinaypilgrim.com.