AN INVITATION

    The God of the Bible is a "missionary God" who graciously pursues people.  That pursuit involves the work of the Holy Spirit and the proclamation of His people—and that proclamation often involves emphases from the local church...(that's us!)
    After all, don't we exist to proclaim the gospel and demonstrate the kingdom of God in our lost and dying world?  In being faithful to her calling, the church should be reaching people with the good news of the gospel and welcoming them in to a local community of believers. Would that not be the natural overflow of a local church's faithful ministry?  However, many churches find themselves unfruitful in seeing new people to connect with their congregation.
    Many people ARE open to an invitation from church, particularly if it is from someone they know. But one simple invitation isn't necessarily going to result in subsequent attendance. Neighbors may come because of an invitation, but they'll stay for the friendliness of the community.  The personal invitation is an effective way to break down any real or perceived barriers one might have to walking into a church building or being willing to engage in a new circle of people, especially if you are there to welcome them.
    I want to encourage you to invite friends and family to our special FRIENDSHIP SUNDAY CELEBRATION to be held May 17.  Now, please NOTE:   the 2nd Sunday of May is Mother's Day, and we should hold that day special for them! So, pot-luck should be moved to the following week...the 17th. Then,  we should have communion separate from the celebration, as it wouldn't be appropriate to have communion with visitors who might not share our faith and shouldn't then visit the Lord's Table.  So, we'll share the Supper on the 1st & 4th Sundays in May.  Our 10AM Summer schedule will begin on the 4th Sunday, the 24th, Memorial Day weekend.
    Let's make this something special, and when you're excited about this event you'll express that in your discussion with those you want to tell about Jesus' love. Your goal is to invite people to come, and my goal will be to tell His story of love for us all.  Pray for God's direction as you consider, let's say, 3 people you would like to pray for and invite specifically.
    Remember we all don't speak the same love language.  Some speak words of affirmation, others, receiving gifts, or acts of service.  Others need quality time or physical touch.  What language of love do you hear?  
    Certainly we see and hear Jesus' love as we mourn His death, pleading for forgiveness for those who "know not what they do", and also as we meet and greet Jesus after the Third Day.  WE are witnesses!  WHY do you doubt?  Stop doubting and believe?  He wants us to rejoice!  We've been saved!
    God loves YOU, so do I .... (GLYSDI)   Pass it around, it will come back to you.