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The Invitation

March 2, 2009

Can I confess that I grew up with invitation burnout? I saw what I considered manipulation as a kid growing up. The song would go on and on until someone gave in or got up or at least asked for prayers. Just As I am for the thirtieth time.

I have witness phantom hands. I was at a concert when the singer asked everyone to bow their heads and close their eyes. I listened as he gave affirmation to those who were responding to his call. I watched because I had not bowed my head and closed my eyes as no hands came up, not one in the entire auditorium. I sighed as he went on and on affirming those who responded. Those phantom hands.

I have also sat and watched already Christians stand at the invitation to come to Jesus. I have heard the applause and watched the numbers counted. I have listened to the speaker affirm the number of first time decisions for Christ. How many times do you get to make a first time commitment?

I say all of this to let you know that I have also changed my mind about invitations. I allowed all of these bad experiences to influence me. I have never liked invitations. What God has done in my life is remind me that the invitation isn’t the problem. What people did with them was.

I need to extend invitations. For many years they seemed like rote but that was attitude and atmosphere. Done for the right reasons in the right way avoiding gimmicks and deception, well they have there place.

Yesterday was the first Sunday after my rededication to invitations. What do you think happened? That’s right. Someone came and gave their life to Christ. I was able to pray with them as they asked God to restore them. Baptized many years ago they said they wanted God back in their life.

I was reminded that invitations are necessary and my attitude is all that needs to change. The Spirit of God can use anything.

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