Summary: People won't come unless they are invited. Invitations are not always accepted or wanted.
Your Invitation Can Change the Worlds
When I say “Your Invitation Can Change the World”, where does your mind go?
Do you think about being asked to go somewhere wonderful or are you thinking that you should be inviting someone to come with you?
Just a simple question, but until you know exactly what is being said, you don’t know how to respond.
1 Sam 17:11 (Message) When Saul and his troops heard the Philistine's challenge, (Invitation) they were terrified and lost all hope.
This was a place that none of the Israelites really wanted to be, and they would have loved to never have heard the invitation.
Some invitations are pleasant and some are not, but all of them will change your world.
If a gold embossed envelop comes to your home special delivery and inside you find an invitation to the White House, your life is about to change. Your world will never be the same.
For the rest of your life, you will be known by your friends as someone who received an invitation to the White House. But what happens if you accept the invitation? You will be on the national news, your name and where you live will be televised nationwide.
Your invitation will change your world.
Some of you asked or were asked, or hope to be asked in the future, to attend the Junior/Senior Prom and when that happened, your life changed or will change.
The school year book will have pictures of the event and you will have memories of the good or bad times you had. But those thoughts will be with you forever. The invitation to these events will change the course of your life.
Sometimes we are not pleased when we receive an invitation are we? It was not the right person or to the right event.
1 Sam 17:11 (NIV) On hearing the Philistine's words (Invitation), Saul and all the Israelites were dismayed and terrified.
The invitation here is like the game show “The Price is Right” isn’t it? Come on down, let’s play a round of life and death.
If you received an invitation like this one, wouldn’t your life change? I really believe it would, it would mine.
Some invitations you want to refuse.
Let’s go to the other side, when you are the host, you are the one sending out the invitations. Are you asking the right people to the right event, for the right reasons?
In John the 11th chapter, Martha and Mary sent the invitation, the request, for Jesus to come as their brother Lazarus is sick and dying.
This was the invitation that would change their world. Their brother would be healed; he would have a wonderful testimony.
John 11:4 (NIV) When he heard this, Jesus said, "This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God's glory so that God's Son may be glorified through it."
This invitation, that Jesus chose to delay, was to come and help, not only would changed their world, it was an invitation that changed the world of the disciples and it changes our world today.
The parable of the Great Banquet in Luke 14 is a perfect example of the wrong people receiving an invitation. They were not ready to be in the presence of their host.
They were more concerned with what was going on in their world.
Your invitation must be sent to the right people at the right time, for the right reason.
When Jesus sent the disciple out in Matthew 10:14 If any household or town refuses to welcome you or listen to your message (your Invitation), shake its dust from your feet as you leave.
The disciples gave an invitation to everyone they came in contact with. If their message was refused they were told to move on. Go find someone else to ask.
The invitation you accepted changed you when you accepted it, but some of the people you will come in contact with are not ready to accept what you are offering just as some were not ready to attend the banquet.
They may or may not receive another one. We are to shake the dust off our feet and move on.
That’s hard to take isn’t it? Did we do it wrong; did I not hear the Holy Spirit’s directions?
What is the invitation to? Goliath invited the Israelites to come on down to the valley and fight to the death.
Mary and Martha invited Jesus to come and heal their brother.
The master of the house invited his friends and neighbors to a great banquet.
Jesus sent His disciples out to invite others to accept the Good News of the Messiah.
Each one of these invitations had an alternative ending, unlike the reruns you see on TV. The choice was theirs, it was up to them to receive or reject the invitation.