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God Loved, God Gave, & Now Anyone Who Believes

August 8, 2019

“Everyone is invited!”

This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. — Jesus, John 3:16, the message version

One of my favorite things to say as a pastor in worship is,”Everyone is invited!”

[Quick Review: this is the third of what I think will be four blogs. If you missed the first two, scroll down to catch up and this’ll still be here in a moment when you return.]

One thing that hasn’t changed even in the midst of other controversies in our United Methodist denomination is Open Communion. This simply means that you do not need to be a member of whatever local church to join us at The Lord’s Table. You don’t even need to be a member of any church anywhere.

Some churches practice Closed Communion. They have their reasons, and I’m not here to argue with them.

We believe precisely what it was my joy as a working pastor to share four days ago in worship to introduce The Sacrament of Holy Communion —

Christ our Lord invites to his table

all who love him,

who earnestly repent of their sin

and seek to live in peace

with one another.

— Where did we ever get such an inclusive concept? From places like John 3:16, where Christ Jesus says that anyone can be someone who believes in him.

Think back to the last time you were in worship. Did you look around? Did you notice that someone was missing? You know them. Contact them. Invite them back home.

You know someone who’d benefit from joining you in worship. Contact them. Invite them, and offer to pick them up and take them for coffee or a meal after.

One of my favorite things I’ve been trying to memorize for years is this —

There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody’s job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn’t do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have.

— God loved.

God gave.

And now Anybody is that person or persons you’re going to invite, and you, and me by the grace of God if we believe in God’s Greatest Gift.



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