Accept greatest invitation of all

Published 11:39 am Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Invitations can bring great joy at times and fear and panic at other times.

Children love to get invitations. They usually are for a classmate or friend who is celebrating a birthday and wants everybody to come.

You might receive an invitation to be a part of an event because of your qualifications. Different colleges and universities are bombarding our mailbox, inviting my son Andrew to come and visit the best school this side of Harvard.

Weddings bring in a whole special category of invitations. There are invitations to the various showers for the bride and groom (I am old enough to remember when these were only for the bride).

There are invitations for various luncheons and parties prior to the wedding and of course, the invitation to the wedding and reception.

All of the above types of invitations bring feelings of happiness, accomplishment and joy. So, why is it we respond so differently to invitations in church?

I can’t think of a more joyous occasion than when someone commits or recommits their life to Jesus Christ. To be restored to the one who died on the cross for you. To publicly acknowledge the living God who created you. To publicly proclaim that you want eternal life.

For some reason, fear paralyzes us and keeps us from accepting the invitation. We might be embarrassed or fear what others would say and do. I felt the same way when I made my public proclamation. The joy and excitement, however, helped me to overcome that fear. I did it in spite of my fear.

As soon as I did, my fear went away. Not one person in the church laughed at me. I never heard an insult or somebody questioning my motives.

There will never be a more important invitation in your life for you to accept, than the invitation to be in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

The invitation is made to each of us every day. It is never too late to commit your life to Christ for the first time or for the 1000th.

Bill Brown is the pastor of the First United Methodist Church in Montevallo.