One of the things I’ve seen over & over again is the power of a simple invitation extended to someone to take a step toward God. As a pastor type I have to work a little harder to get a piece of this, but I do it, not so much out of obedience to God (yes, we are Hisinviters, His witnesses – many passages about this) and not only out of compassion for someone’s plight who is far from God (of course this needs to live inside us as a burden). I make sure that I’m involved in the whole inviting enterprise because I love the rocket ride of getting in the way of God’s powerful current. It’s truly better than surfing! I experienced a little of this last Friday talking to the guy at my favorite gas station who always works there who happens to be from Afghanistan. I talked to him about the Kite Runner & invited him to come check it out. I love seeing God use me. I think I love even more (believe it or not) seeing God use you.
Here’s an email that I received that is a classic about the life changing power of a simple invite. I’ve been sitting on this for about 3-4 months. It is shared with permission.
I am so excited. God has gotten in… stirring and moving one of my friends.
About a year ago when Journey was doing their annual “God at the movies” series, I invited a friend from work to attend. The invitation I extended was rather casual, something like, “Hey, if you like movies and you are not doing anything Friday night, come check this out. Oh, and there will be this cool violin player there too.”
Well, to my surprise, my friend attended. He has now been attending Journey regularly for nearly a year. During the past year, he joined the singles group at Journey. He also joined the Usher team and serves twice monthly. He also volunteers to pick up trash and debris from our local beaches. And this past Friday, he joined in the Hope for the Homeless ministry serving downtown San Diego. He shared with me about his experience and he plans to serve in this role again. So here’s a snapshot of my friend’s week:
Midweek – Singles Group Dinner
Friday – Hope for the Homeless
Saturday – Cleaning Up Local Beach
Sunday – Ushering
This is just so exciting. God is moving… Stirring… Loving… Guiding… Embracing.
Please continue to pray for Daryl’s journey.
Yee-Ha! (People from Lakeside – is that how you spell that phrase?)
BTW – this is one more reason that EVERY church, every ministry at some level needs to be “seeker sensitive”. We who are leading need to see the invites of our people as a SACRED TRUST.