Bring Someone with You
There is no message more powerful than the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is a message of hope to those whose life seems hopeless. It is a message of comfort to those whose life is filled with hurt and anguish. It is a message of peace to those whose life is full of discord and disharmony. It is a message of encouragement to those who have been beat down by the words and actions of others. It is a message of light to those that are living in darkness. It is a message of eternal life to those who don't know Christ as Savior and Lord. Unfortunately many will never hear this message, and it's our fault as Christians!
I believe that it is the responsibility of every Christian to invite others to come hear the message of Christ. We have at the ready several excuses as to why we don't invite others to church. Before we look at our excuses, let me give you five reason why you should invited the unchurched to church with you this Sunday.
- They will hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Most Christians simply are not comfortable in sharing the Gospel of Christ with others. That's another discussion! Inviting the unchurched to church will at least expose them to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
- They will connect with Christians at church, and in doing so they will realize that we deal with the same circumstances and situations that they do. The difference is not in the things that we face, but in the way that we face those moments. Imagine the impact that could have on the unchurched.
- Their needs may be met at church. There was a young couple that visited our church on a rather chilly Sunday (it was -40!). They had very young children and they shared that they had very little heating fuel and no wood. That afternoon one family took them enough heating fuel to last them several weeks. A few others of us took them several truckloads of split firewood. This couple had a very real need met and was shown the love of Christ in a very practical way.
- Your church will grow. The more that you invite people to church, the more people that will come. The more that people come to your church, the more that they will get involved. The more that they get involved, the more they will begin inviting others to church. That is church growth at its best!
- People are most likely to come to church when they are invited by someone they already know. It is not just the responsibility of the pastor or the deacon to invite people to church. The very best person to invite that person you work with, or are neighbors with, or friends with…is you! You already have a relationship with them.
But…and then the excuses begin to flow like water over a waterfall!
- "I just don't know what to say." Really!?! You talk with your co-workers, neighbors, and friends daily about almost everything. What is so hard about saying, "Hey, I was wondering if you'd like to come to church with me this Sunday?".
- "I'm afraid that they might say no." Rejection is such a powerful enemy. You're right, some of them will say no. Remember that they are not rejecting you; they are rejecting Christ. Also remember, God may be working in their lives and your invitation is just what they need to help them take that step towards salvation.
- "I'm afraid of what they might think about me." Let me ask you a very personal question. Are you really worried about what they might think, or are you worried that they might never have realized you were a Christian by the way you live your life around them?
- "I just don't think about it." Why not? You know the hurts and struggles of those that you work with. You know the needs of your neighbors and friends. As a Christian, shouldn't each of us be looking for opportunities to invite others to Christ and to church? If you really don't think about asking others to church than I urge you to prayerfully ask God to give you a heart for those who are lost.
- "It's just too far for people to come." People don't think twice about driving 30 minutes or more for work. People will drive long distances to go shopping or to go to a sporting event. If you think enough about your church to invite others to attend, they won't think twice about the drive!
Inviting people to church is not rocket science. It shouldn't be something that we dread or are afraid of. It shouldn't be something that we have to be made to do. Inviting others to church should just be a natural overflow of our relationship with Jesus Christ. We should be so in love with Christ that we can't help but to want others to have that same experience. Let me give you a few practical steps:
- Pray. Prayer is the most underused weapon in the Armor of God. Pray for those unchurched that you already have a relationship with. Pray that God will open their heart and make them receptive to His love. Pray that God will give you the opportunity to invite them to come to church with you.
- Look. Once you have asked God to move, get ready! Look for God to do what you have asked. God doesn't want even one to miss out on His gift of salvation. Look for the open door that God will give you.
- Act. Once God opens that door, take action! Don't let fear keep you from doing what you have prayed about. Don't let being embarrassed keep you from taking advantage of the door that God has opened. Open your mouth and invite them to church with you this Sunday. It may seem like the hardest thing that you have ever done, but it just might be the most important thing that you will ever do!
- Rejoice. Give God thanks! If they accept your invitation, give God thanks and begin immediately praying that their heart will be open to the Gospel of Christ and that the pastor's message will speak directly to them. If they reject your invitation, give God thanks for the opportunity to ask, and continue praying that God will soften their heart.
One of the easiest ways to Get the Most Out of Church is by Bringing Someone with You. Who have you asked to worship with you this Sunday? Who will you be bringing to church?