“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.” – Colossians 3:1-4.
I love the church. I grew up in the church. Many of my earliest memories are times spent worshipping with others in church. So for the life of me, I can’t understand why people don’t want to be part of it. Yes, the church has made some mistakes and has given people reasons to stay away. But if only each person would give it another try. Or maybe it would be their first experience attending church, I think they would be surprised. Which got me thinking.
It prompted the question, why do we go to church? What benefit is there in attending church regularly, for me, for you, for others? The reasons are many, but one certainly rises to the top: there is a real place that has been created by God and prepared by Jesus for each of us, if we accept His invitation. An extraordinary place of astounding wonder. Greater than we can fully understand or imagine. A place called Heaven, where believers will spend eternity with God.
The word eternity, because it’s one of those words that captures the imagination. The mystery and power of the word haunts the mind. But it is not some abstract idea that is something I will worry about in the future. We don’t want to step into eternity until we are right with God. That is why the Easter services are so important. Attending that one service can shape their view of Christianity and their vision of the future. More than that it can give them eternal hope.
Easter is a time where people are looking to try out a new church or returning to church after a hiatus. Research shows that when the holidays roll around, there’s an increase in searches online for churches, and this is especially true at Easter. In fact, the highest share of searches for “church” is on the week of Easter Sunday. This helps prove the great opportunity that Easter provides as an entry point into our church. Inviting someone to church can change where they spend eternity.
Take some special time out each morning this week to partner with the Holy Spirit and pray for one person you would like to invite. Then make it your mission to invite that person. It could be an invitation to an eternity with the risen Savior.
Imagine the day when a friend, or relative, or coworker, or neighbor is worshiping God with their hands in the air as they stand next to you. Can you see their face as they worship the one who saved them, gave them peace, joy, purpose and new life? That picture can be a reality, but it starts with a relationship and an invitation. Will you be the one God uses to take a stand?
- Make a list of people you want to invite to church on Easter. Do you have a relationship with that individual(s)? Have you prayed for that individual(s)?
- Pray and ask God for the wisdom to invest in the lives of others in a way that draws them to Him.