I don’t have much to offer but I do offer friendship. I offer a smile, I offer a hug. The type of friendship that sits with the “lonely” one at the lunch table. Sits in the back of the class room, with the dunce. Sits with the hypochondriac in the nurses office and the overwhelmed girl who won’t leave her bathroom stall.
What I have encountered most of the time is that when you stop for the one that gets overlooked, there a window of opportunity to see that person as Jesus sees them. For a second, you them through they eyes of Jesus. Seeing things in the Spirit and in the natural. I see the scars of verbal and emotional damage covering them like sores, but on them I also see a velvety purple robe of righteousness wrapped around them. I see a daughter who walks around in a white ball gown but walks with their head down because all she sees is a reflection of herself wearing a sack cloth. I see the gentleman carrying a bundle of boulders named after expectations, but Jesus waiting behind him to cut the rope and lighten his load at the mention of His name. I get caught up staring sometimes because I can’t believe the images I see, that Jesus shares with me. Sometimes I even get caught up seeing Jesus in the eyes of some and I have to look away. Sometimes the fact that Jesus wants to make eye contact with me is overwhelming.
I like to hang out and stop for the ones that people generally wouldn’t. Often times I get to find out just how awesome Jesus made them to be and just awesome it would be to have them apart of my life and my community. Everyone has something to offer, its just a matter of finding the right hole that your block fits in. I have found from experience that if you are a square pig fitting into a round hole, you might fit, but it will be uncomfortable. Also it would only take one look for everyone to see right of the bat that, that hole just wasn’t meant for you.
I am who I am today because I was stopped for, and I had someone come and bring peace to the storm raging in my mind. I was continually being pursued and sought after. Mentored and loved, reminded what I was made for. Even still I have to remind myself of the time that was spent on me and remembered that I was worth it, so I am determined to live a life worth of the time spent and living a life worthy of my calling.
What does it take ? Could you count the cost ? To stop for the unlovable, the overlooked, forgotten? Who could that be in your life? If you think about it deeply that person doesn’t always have to live in a village thousands of miles away overseas….the person could be in your church, work, family, in your very home. To stop for the one, does not mean stop, and carry their burden, but rather point them in the direction of the one who does a free exchange, no-questions asked guaranteed, takes the heavy burden and gives you His that is better and lighter. What could that look like. A phone call, a thinking of you card, a rub on the back, smile in their direction, date for ice cream. Be intentional.
Busy? So was Jesus, don’tcha think ? He was a man with a mission, a family and followers. Yet, he still had time for the one. The one who was sick, the one who was emotionally broken, the one who was outcasted, the one who was shamed…. the one who died. He made time for them all, with all that He was purposed to do for the Father. Think you are busier than Jesus? There is no one who wants to make the wrong things right more then Him.
Its takes a lot to meet people where they are, but its doable. Jesus has made us to be able to be all men to all people. Cool. But, exhausting. That doesn’t mean that I wear many masks but rather man hats. Masks hide who I am, hats still show who I am but accessorizes it with a role. I have been the popular, the lonely. The anxious, the joyful. The majority , the minority. The single, the dating. The oldest, the youngest. Center stage, behind the curtain. There are a lot of things that I can empathize with someone with. Not all, but I feel like when I can’t… Jesus comes through and gives me compassion for that person anyway. Give them time, your undivided attention, and show them the face of Love. When all else fails it just helps to hear the words “I’m here for you”
You know what has saved my life from the several suicidal thoughts….. ….just one encounter, of someone who noticed the one.