Eight years ago I wished for a big and fun sweet 16 party (albeit extremely innocent). I wanted everyone to know I wanted to be their friend. I always struggled to feel accepted, yet I had the God-given heart of an inviter.
I wanted everyone to know they were loved, considered, and welcome in my home and my life.
After crafting just the right invitation on just the right paper, I was off to school with a folder full of doorknobs to my heart.
Goodness, was I nervous. I made my way to lunch tables I didn’t know if I was allowed to be within 10 feet of. I snagged a seat in the unfamiliar back of class.
Body shaking, heart pounding, I was wrought with fear each time I attempted to strike up a nearly natural conversation with people I wasn’t sure even knew I existed.
Will they make fun of me? Will they even talk to me? Will they think it’s a joke? Will they think it’s a pity invite? Will they think I’m just trying to make my way to the top? Will they think I’m lame since I just want to play games and watch movies at my birthday party? What do they do for their birthdays?
Each time I reached for an invitation, my throat swelled with insecurities I wouldn’t let overwhelm me.
There was an invitation with their name on it. It was not mine to keep to myself.
After inviting somewhere around 100 people to join me in guilt-free fun and genuine celebration, about 15 people made their way through my front door over the course of the night.
So often that hideously familiar fear revisits me when I am faced with the opportunity to invite someone to come to Jesus.
I want everyone to know they are loved, considered, and welcome in his Kingdom and his sight.
Sometimes I let insecurity get the best of me. I talk myself out of it with self-centered fears and blind doubts.
There is an invitation to a party in a home far better than mine. It is big, fun, all-inclusive, genuine, and endlessly guilt-free. It is an invitation that is not mine to keep to myself.
Not everyone will choose to walk through the door, but how will they know there’s a party or how to get there if I don’t tell them?
“But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, ‘How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!’ But not everyone welcomes the Good News,”