From Pastor Johnny

Why Should I Invite Someone to Church?

A church member recently sent me a text with the message below,

 “As we do often, I invited a young couple to our church who was purchasing something in our business. They seemed touched that I had invited them however they already attended another church.  They have been here since 2009 and have rarely been invited to attend a church.  That is why they appreciated the invitation. They are from Florence, Alabama and being invited to a church up there was a normal thing. I found that interesting.”

 

            Gotta be honest. I found this story beyond interesting. I found it revealing.

            When is the last time someone invited you to church on Sunday morning? Let’s consider it the other way. Over the last six months, how often have you made the attempt to invite someone to church on Sunday morning?

            Most born-again Christians, in multiple polls by agencies such as Lifeway, Barna Research Center, and Church Answers, indicate that being invited to church on a Sunday morning was significant to crucial to them coming to Christ. Despite all the changes in church through the years, Sunday morning worship attendance is still significantly impactful on the present and future spiritual lives of those who attend.

          Inviting people to Sunday morning worship and getting our people in the habit of that act is a critical link to seeing unchurched hear of Christ, seeing unchurched saved, and seeing the previously churched return. Bottom line: We must get regular church attenders in the habit of weekly inviting friends, neighbors, co-workers, and strangers to attend church.

         We will use Golden Acres Baptist Church as an example for the power of inviting. What if only a portion of those who attend Sunday morning worship at Golden Acres regularly invited one person per week? Let’s take a conservative guess to say that, if a portion of our regular attenders for Sunday morning worship invited one person each week, then that would be about 300 invites per week.

          Suppose there are 300 invitations extended per week (remember, that is only one invitation per person per week, and obviously increases if each person invites more than one each).

          And suppose that 5% of those invitees actually attend worship on Sunday morning. That would be 15 per week and 780 per year. Remember, many of these 15 invited attenders would bring family members of at least 2-3, so we could easily be talking about 40-45 invited attenders weekly on Sunday morning. This would equal out to about 2,340 invited attenders per year.

          Now, out of those 2,340 invited attenders, what if 3% came to know Christ? That would be 70 people per year coming to Christ just out of the invites - not including all of the others. Or, what if only 1% if the 2,340 invited attenders were saved in a particular year? That would be 23-24 people coming to know Christ simply because people invited them – and that does not even include the others who are saved as a result of other types of church ministry and outreach.And, what if another 3% of those invited attenders joined Golden Acres to become a part of the crowd who is inviting? Now, the numbers go up more.

          Can you imagine? Twenty-four people saved from hell. Twenty-four lives changed. Twenty-four families impacted. Twenty-four servants added to the Kingdom of God!

 ALL BECAUSE SOME OF GOD’S PEOPLE WEEKLY STARTED INVITING PEOPLE TO CHURCH ON SUNDAY.

           Why invite people to church on Sunday? Isn’t the answer obvious?

               (If you need a church home, or need some spiritual answers text the word DECISION to 334-203-9946, fill out the link sent to you, and someone will be in touch.)

Will You Rise UP? Day 3

You Know the Pattern:    John 11:26

And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

         The pattern is a mental belief and repentance that translates to a living expression. This is real faith that shows itself in our lives in words and deeds. One of the great preachers of the Puritan era captured the real meaning of the resurrection in his sermon entitled, “The Death of Death in the Death of Christ.” The title is more than a play on words. It contains profound truth.

 Jesus Christ explains that He is the reason we will rise up. Our place in heaven is not about our behavior or our desire, but it is about the person of Christ.

In one of his books, A. M. Hunter, the New Testament scholar, relates the story of a dying man who asked his Christian doctor to tell him something about the place to which he was going. As the doctor fumbled for a reply, he heard a scratching at the door, and he had his answer.

“Do you hear that?” he asked his patient. “It’s my dog. I left him downstairs, but he has grown impatient, and has come up and hears my voice. He has no notion what is inside this door, but he knows that I am here. Isn’t it the same with you? You don’t know what lies beyond the Door, but you know that your Master is there.”

Will You Rise Up? Day 2

You Know the Passageway:  

“He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.”

          The picture here is the certainty of death from this earth.  It is not really “though” as if someone may, or may not, die.  It is the picture that leaving this earth is a certainty (i.e. when he dies, he will live). Jesus is explaining that there is a path we all will walk. No matter what happens ahead in our lives, we will all ultimately leave this earth. It is an unavoidable path! The question is not whether we will go down this path, but what will our experience be when we do!

         On Thursday, May 15, 1997 my bride and I woke up early in the morning, got ready, and headed toward the Coliseum Hospital of Macon, Georgia. She was over 9 months pregnant with what would be our baby boy named Andrew. She was scheduled for an 8:00am C Section that day with Dr. Minor Vernon at the helm.

         As we headed up I75 North through Macon, she was extremely quiet. I said, “Baby, how do you feel.” She started to talk, and teared up, and said, “I am so nervous about this. It almost makes me feel like I want to take off and just drive away.”

         I knew she didn’t mean that but was incredibly nervous. I said, “Baby, whatever you do, that baby is coming. He is coming in the back seat of our car or in the O.R. of the Coliseum Hospital. It is not a matter of, if he will come, but when.”

         She agreed, so we went on and had an 8”9’ baby boy. You know as well as I do that, once you are pregnant, that baby is coming out one way or another. In the same way, if you live on this earth, you are going to leave it sooner or later.

            The only question about you leaving this earth is when and where will you go? So…I am asking you. You will leave this earth, but where will you go?

If you leave this life with the resurrected Jesus, your passageway is secure. Instead of walking us through an abstract idea, Jesus is prepared to walk us through death.  Instead of offering us vague ideas, He is prepared to lead us to heaven. Instead of referencing areas of historical significance, he is prepared to lead us from temptation, sin and death.  The passageway to eternity is not a passageway at all, but it is a person and His name is Jesus.   

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