Many people in our communities are just waiting to be invited to be part of what is going on at your church. Invitation is such a simple thing to do. “Hey mate, I’m going to … would you like to come?”
We recently heard about a lady who had waited 7 years for someone to invite her. She had moved here to New Zealand from Brazil. She had attended church in Brazil and had tried a few here in New Zealand when she first arrived but found it difficult to fit in. Life went on and she moved and stopped attending anywhere. She decided that she would wait for someone to invite her.
She had a new child. They started attending mainly music at a local presbyterian church. We, at Alpha NZ, had recently been talking to the Church Leader about invitation. He encouraged his mainly music team to invite the participants to come to church on Sunday. They did! She came! The 7 year wait was over!
Tearfund UK did some reasearch on the streets of 5 major cities in the UK. They asked, “If someone you knew invited you to church, would you go?” The results surprised and overwhelmed them. Over 80% of people said they would go. Invitation is reliant on us asking a simple question, “Hey mate, I’m going to this thing, do you want to come?” The response, thankfully, is not our responsibility. God is the one that takes that one on. Our responsibility is to invite! God handles whether they say yes or no!
I like to equate this with a story from Mose’s life. There was that moment where he was standing at the edge of the sea, Pharoah’s chariots are rapidly approaching, and God asks him to go and stand on rock overlooking the sea and hold out his staff. Now if I was Moses, I’m sure there would have been this thought, “Really God, do you really need me to do this, surely you can just do what you are going to do without my involvement”. But God is not like that. He loves to get us involved. And as you probably know God parted the ocean and the Israelites crossed on dry land. God did the stuff only he could do and asked Moses to do what he could do.
For us when we invite it’s like we hold out Mose’s staff. Then we rely on God to do the part only he can, work in our friends life 24/7 and encourage them to respond positively. It is such an exciting journey and we hope that you will join us on it.