Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I Want To Invite You!



Scripture:


Rev. 22:17     The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.”
    And let everyone who hears say, “Come.”
    And let everyone who is thirsty come.
    Let anyone who wishes take the water of life as a gift.

Observation:


Here we reach the closing chapter of Revelation and of the word of God and it concludes with a beautiful invitation.  The Spirit reaches out to all of humanity with an invitation to “come” and be a part of the fellowship found in God and his people.  The invitation is not only extended by the Spirit, but by the bride as well.   The church is to be actively engaged in reaching out to invite those who aren’t walking in this fellowship so that they can hear the invitation to “come.”  Those who are thirsty for this relationship will be satisfied as they drink of the water of life, providing satisfaction for all of eternity. 

Application:

The final chapter of the Bible is written with this beautiful invitation and the final post of this year comes to you as an invitation as well. 

It’s the end of 2013 and as we head into 2014 we have no idea what is in store, and yet there is the one constant, God.  It seems that every year brings with it different challenges and obstacles and yet, through all that life throws our way we can learn to either depend more on God, or on ourselves.  I choose to depend on God, and as a result I pray that he is able to mold me and transform me.  There is still so much more that I need to learn and I know there’s much more transformation that needs to happen in my life but I have to say that I have been enjoying the journey and I have been amazed by the faithfulness of God to carry us through the rocky days in his incredible arms of love. 

I have a lot of friends who have grown up in the church and have been disappointed by what they have experienced.  As a part of the church I would like to extend my hand and apologize for the things that we have sometimes done or said in the name of Christianity.  Unfortunately there have been times when the church has done a poor job of extending the invitation to “come” but has instead established some ugly barriers to knowing Christ in a deeply personal way.  I just want you to know that even though the bride — the church — may have some ugly warts there is an invitation to come, for the invitation is not to the bride, but to the bridegroom.  He will not let you down but will instead be your strength, your joy, your companion who will walk this journey of life with you.  He knows that you are thirsty for something that will satisfy the deep thirst or ache in your heart and he is the only one who can bring true and eternal satisfaction. 

For some of my dear friends through the years you have never known church, nor have you ever experienced the bridegroom.  I have kept you in my heart and prayed for you throughout the years and today the invitation to “come” is extended to you and will continue to be extended to you. 

As you make your New Years resolutions I want you to consider where you may be in your spiritual walk.  There is a beautiful invitation placed before you to enter into a new or renewed journey.  Will you come?

Prayer:


Lord, please continue to lead me on the journey.  Amen.

2 comments:

  1. Carla: Thanks for this. I wrote a blog post this fall about what it means for the church to apologize for past actions (http://johnwhawthorne.com/2013/10/21/sorry-about-that-2/). It's small steps like this one that will pave the way. Thanks for not saying "we're sorry you felt bad" but taking the really important step of saying "we did things that caused harm". Have a wonderful 2014!

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    Replies
    1. John, thanks for your encouraging word and thanks too, for your blog post. I think it is important for us to take responsibility, and only in doing so can we truly point people to Christ.

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