Let’s face it. We all have a “Have-to-Meet” List, right? Maybe it’s at church, work, or in the neighborhood. It may be someone popular or funny who seems to attract a crowd. Perhaps it’s someone with enough clout to better our lives. We all want to run in those “power circles”. But what about spending time with those people who can’t really do anything for us? The people who don’t make anyone’s “Have-to-Meet” List.

At church, it may be someone you think is “weird,” or someone who has a physical disability. It could be someone who makes you feel awkward. These are the people Jesus sought out during His earthly ministry. Everyone marveled at the people He spent time with—the sinners, the down-and-out, the unloved, and maybe even some “weird” folks.

This is true Christian love. This is what real friendship is all about. If our friends are only our friends because of what they bring to the table, isn’t this kind of shallow? That’s not to say we can’t have any powerful, popular, or just “cool” acquaintances. It’s just that God wants us to reach out to all people, especially those who get little or no attention.

So your challenge this week is to find one or two people who nobody talks to. Reach out in true friendship, not in a condescending attitude of “I’m doing everyone such a big favor.”

This is the spirit of fellowship that should characterize Christians. You’ll be surprised at how much it will benefit your own spiritual journey.

Love gives itself; it is not bought. — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder