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Michelle Warner

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Invitations from God

Posted on February 1st, 2012

I have been devouring the book, Invitations from God, that I received for Christmas from my Mother-in-law. I love when a book speaks directly to what you’re learning, and that is what this book has been doing for me. I found the following words very convicting, challenging, and encouraging. I hope they cause you to ponder your life as they have for me.

Invitations from God by Adele Ahlberg Calhoun, pgs 14-17:

“In our culture, the more invitations that come our way, the more valuable we are considered to be. The more clubs or associations we belong to, the more status we have–especially if we had to be nominated and wait to be invited in. By saying yes to the invitations, we prove that we are important, wanted and–of course–busy. The truth, however, is that when we say yes to invitations that keep us compulsively busy, we may be exhibiting a lazy ambivalence that actually keeps us distracted from the invitations that matter most. Squeezing every margin to the max, we are left with less time and space to respond to the invitations from God. We want to enjoy life, but ironically our many yeses to invitations keep us stressed, drained, and inattentive to the divine invitations that bring freedom and belonging. So it is that we say, ‘I can’t come. I’m really busy. Please excuse me’ to the most important invitation we receive. We’ve chosen to say yes to things besides God.

As the flood of invitations from organizations, business, charities, family entertainment, athletics, fitness and education pull us in their wake, we must grab a branch and take stock. Are we ignoring the invitations that matter most’?…Do we have any idea what God’s invitations to us are? Do our yeses to invitations simply divert or stroke our ego? Or do they nurture and grow body, soul, and spirit? Do they build connections within the body of Christ and bring health to our marriage and family? Do the invitations we accept us make us more free or less? Which invitations are shaping your world?…

God’s invitations are meant to mend, shape, and anchor and grow us into the character of Jesus. They call us into our true selves in Christ. They free us from the lie that says, ‘The more invitations the better.’ Invitations from the Holy One serve God’s dream for the world. They don’t call me to become what I produce, what others thing of me or what I know. They invite me to be free. And freedom comes from being an intentional follower of Jesus–one who is a little Christ in this world…

As we accept the divine invitations, an inner knowing of our belonging to God takes root. This root taps into the healing wisdom and love of God, and it braces us against the storm of deforming likes that we are unwanted and don’t matter to anyone unless we produce. In our yeses to God, trust blossoms out as fruit and freedom.”

May we say yes to God’s invitations and discover more of who we are in the process.

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