Have you ever received an invitation you never expected? Let me tell you a story.
I was in my senior year way back in high school when a few weeks after the start of classes, I was invited to run for a position in the student council. I said yes, and it changed my life forever.
You see, I used to be a really shy kid back then. And when I say shy, I really mean SHY. Okay? Yes, I was a good student but my personality really needs polishing. I’m the type of student who would be the last person to raise her hand even though she already knew the answer right after the teacher asked the question. In fact, at home, I would never even dare to answer the phone. I’m afraid of talking to people. I have the ideas, but I’m scared to communicate it. Get the picture?
To make the long story short, I won. I became the auditor of the council. And as I look back, I can say that the success wasn’t really the time I won the candidacy but was actually the moment I said yes to the invite. To be honest, my decision making that time wasn’t really based on the question, “Can I handle the responsibility?” but more of, “Do I have the courage to win this?” The weeks after I said “yes” was actually tough for me; my schedule was mostly room to room visitations, introducing myself, talking about our platform and plans, and a lot of talking and dealing with people. It took my full commitment to have the courage to face my fear and step out of my comfort zone each day.
Today, I’m so thankful for that experience because I was able to bring the whole personality-shift when I was in college and even until now in my profession. And it all started with a simple invitation.
Now, I have another story about another girl whom you and I have known since we were a child. It’s about Mary; the mother of Jesus. Her life also turned upon an invitation.
“…The angel came as the courier of the King. But still, she needed to say yes. He would not force the whole thing upon her. Her heart needed to be willing. She would need her heart through all that followed. Accepting God’s invitation required remarkable courage, and once again all hell broke loose. Her enemy raged. She nearly lost her marriage. She and Joseph certainly lost their standing in the synagogue. Her life became an incredible story. Mary needed a steadfastness of heart to keep saying yes to God…” – Captivating
“Mary responded, I am the Lord’s servant, and I am willing to accept whatever He wants.May everything you have said come true.” (Luke 1:38 NLT)
Wow. Can you just imagine if Mary had said no? Would we even have a reason to celebrate Christmas today? What a woman of courage! God gave her an invitation to be the mother of Jesus. The salvation of the world rested upon her respond to God’s call. But God’s invitation wasn’t finished after He gave it to Mary. In fact, a greater invitation was given when Christ was born, died, and rose again. We are invited to believe in Him; to confess that we are a sinner and accept His forgiveness. We are invited to allow Him, the Savior of the world, become the Lord of our lives and worship Him, the King of Kings. We are invited to become His child and seek Him and follow Him. We are invited to receive the gift of eternal life.
Choosing to accept His invitation would also require our commitment. We need to be sincere and persevere to keep saying yes to God from the moment we invited Him into our lives. Yes it would be a struggle, and would mean a lot of sacrifices. But just remember the story about Mary. She chose to believe and obey, and her life became an incredible story.
Christmas started with an invitation. And today, God is offering you the same.
God is inviting you to believe in His son, Jesus Christ. Will you accept it?