A Personal Invitation

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Betty CrossSeveral years ago our church hosted an event called a Lay Witness Mission. We invited other churches in the area to send several of their members for a weekend visit to our church to share testimonies and just enjoy a weekend of worship and fellowship. Some church members opened their homes to provide a place for the visitors to stay from Friday night till Sunday morning.
It took a lot of planning, organization and commitment by everyone involved. We had several committees in charge of the various duties. Events for every age group were planned for all day Saturday with special services on Saturday evening and Sunday morning. Most importantly, we spent hours in prayer with prayer teams meeting regularly asking for God’s blessings on this outreach attempt.
We were more than blessed by the wonderful people that came and shared their experiences in the Lord with us. Later the members of our church were invited to visit other churches and share our testimonies as well. It was a glorious time in the Lord when many people had their faith renewed and the church was revived.
My job for the Lay Witness Mission was to send out the invitations. Though we used a form letter so each invitation would say the same thing, we wanted them to be personal. This meant each invitation had to be typed and names inserted. In order to involve as many people in the project as possible, it was suggested that I delegate some of the typing to some members who came regularly but usually didn’t participate.
I got a list of people and started calling for help. Most of them were willing, but several didn’t own a typewriter. Once again, I came up with a list of people who had typewriters we could borrow. So I drove to various homes, got the typewriters and delivered them to the ones who needed them. This was in 1972….how much simpler computers have made things today.
When I was remembering all this, what struck me was the importance of a personal invitation. My dad seldom went anywhere, except to work…unless he was personally invited by someone, then he was delighted to go. I think maybe it was just knowing that the person really wanted him to come that made him want to be there….This reminded me of Jesus’ invitation to all of us to accept Him as our Savior and His forgiveness for our sins.
We have all sent invitations to various events, weddings, birthday parties, etc. Some people we know will come, but others we’re not so sure about so we might make a few phone calls…just so they know we really want them there. Others might get a hand-written note along with the regular invitation. Any personal touch we can add to make them know their presence is important to us.
Sometimes an invitation comes with an RSVP request which means the sender wants to know if you plan to come or not. Some get lost or misplaced and are soon forgotten about…important ones are marked on the calendar so as not to be overlooked. Most invitations come in the mail….unless it is short notice, then a person might call or visit in order to extend an invitation in person….
The invitation we receive from Jesus Christ to accept His forgiveness and become a member of His family is always a personal one….and not to be ignored or tossed aside. The invitation might come during a church service, while sitting at home, riding in your car, when you’re alone or in a crowd. The thing about Jesus is….He will meet you wherever you are. This invitation is most important and might come more than once, but please don’t take too long to answer.
I was invited to attend the wedding of my oldest nephew, but wasn’t sure I’d be going….until he called and personally asked me to come. He didn’t think many other family members would be there and felt he needed my support. Of course, I told him I wouldn’t miss it for the world. It meant a lot to me that he had called….a personal invitation means even more when it comes from someone who loves us.
If you have received an invitation from God and haven’t yet answered, please believe me He is only asking you because He loves you….He wants you to become a part of His family so He can show you all the joys of being a child of God. The first time I received His invitation, I tried to ignore it. I told myself that wasn’t something I wanted to become involved in. I wasn’t a “church person.” What if He wants me to do something I don’t want to do? I don’t have clothes to wear to church….the list went on and on. But, He was insistent and on my mind all the next day….That extra personal touch I mentioned…. The invitation came again that very evening.
I was sitting in church….where I’d said I wouldn’t go again, when the singing started and the preacher was saying, “Jesus is knocking on the door of your heart. Don’t leave here tonight without letting Him come in.” With no more argument, I found myself hurrying down the isle to accept His invitation….and the joy came as the knowledge of His love, acceptance and forgiveness filled my whole being. To think I had almost rejected Him, what a mistake that would have been!
“For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.” 2 Tim. 1: 12.
God is personally inviting you now, wherever you are….His is an open invitation and whosoever will may come, but it becomes personal when you become aware that “whosoever” means YOU. It is you He wants to save and you He wants to bless. Please accept…. and start enjoying a brand new life in Him.

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My name is Betty Fritz. I was born and raised in Texas but have resided in Elkhart, Indiana for the last 25 years. My husband is a Hoosier so that’s how we wound up here. We have two daughters and a son plus 6 grand kids…..3 boys and 3 girls. I retired last year after working for 24 years at Elkhart Child Development Center. I’ve been writing since a teenager and have taken several writing courses. I enjoy writing short stories. I wrote a book of poems, RHYMES OF THE TIMES, which was published a few years ago. I have written countless songs, a few for which demo recordings have been made. Recently I’ve been writing blogs..most of them about my faith and things the Lord has taught me in my Christian life over the last 51 years. My inspiration comes from my personal relationship with Jesus Christ and my desire to see that my grandchildren grow up in a Christian nation. My goal is to bring glory to Him and help others to see that there is POWER in the name of JESUS!

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