Easter is less than two weeks away. Most generally, a pastor will tell you that Holy Week is one of the busiest weeks of the year. There are three extra services (Easter Jam, Maundy Thursday and Good Friday) and of course, every preacher wants his/her Easter sermon to be a “home run.” We want everything to be perfect (as perfect as can be). The week is hectic, tiring, and demanding. But this week (the week before the week of Easter) is just as crucial. This is the week for prayer and invitation.
We need to pray. Pray for the services. Pray for the pastors, office staff, facilities crew, singers, musicians, tech people, ushers, greeters, (did I miss anyone? If I did, pray for them). Pray that everything we do is pointing people to Jesus. Pray that we are prepared to welcome and show our guests love. Pray that when people enter they will sense the Holy Spirit is at work and when they leave they will not be the same person that entered. That prayer, by the way, is not simply for the newbies walking through the door, that prayer is for all of us. Me included. Pray for a Jesus-led transformation!
We need to invite. Lately, I’ve written a few blogs about the “rise of the nones” (those people that claim no religious affiliation); the increase in “de-constructionists” (folks walking away from the church or faith) and decline of the church in general. But here’s a secret: most people (even the aforementioned groups) are curious about Jesus. Most people like Jesus. (It’s hard not to like Jesus). What better day to invite them to hear about Jesus than Easter? It is the most Jesus-centric service of the year (every Sunday should be Jesus centered but Resurrection Sunday for sure must be).
I’m convinced that God is not done in our world. I’m so ready to see some of our loved “none” friends flip into becoming “Jesus followers.” I’m dying for revival. TRUTH ALERT: God wants revival even more. As such, I’m convinced that God will give each of us opportunities to share and invite folks this week. So pray for God to open doors to invite people to church this and next week, then boldly walk through those doors with the love of Jesus. Make the most of the opportunities that God’s prevenient grace provides.
Be a part of God’s redemption plan for our world. May his Kingdom come and His will be done in Flint (on earth) as it is in heaven. And may he use you and me to accomplish this goal!
Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Colossians 4:5