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Invitation helps the Christian develop one of the fruits of the Spirit, joy. When Christians invite their friends to something that they love, and their friends accept the invitation, they use the phrase that it was a lovely surprise. It is almost as if the acceptance is completely unexpected. In many cases Christian mothers have prayed for their children, Christian friends have prayed for their friends for ages, and to see their pray answered brings joy.
When we are in alignment with how our Sovereign God has made us, there are amazing sweet spots in life. I believe invitation is one of those areas that is so ordained by God that we do feel utter joy when our invitation is accepted but this is also true of being a disciple and following God’s path for our lives Will Smith in the Pursuit of Happiness journeys towards joy and happiness. Personally I think joy comes when we unlock the God-given potential in our lives and invitation is one way to experience the fruit of joy.
Invitation helps the Christian develop one of the fruits of the spirit, self-control. The meaning of Self-Control in Scripture in Galatians is “the mastery of one’s desires and impulses.”
Invitation reveals that the vast majority of the church currently lacks self-control. Our microwave oven culture where we can have our food within a couple of minutes, is a symptom of a deeper malaise where we want instant results now. In invitation we can experience rejection. How we respond to this shows whether self-control is being produced. For the person with self-control receiving a no to one’s invitation does not put them off asking again, or asking another person. For the person without self-control a negative response is a devastating blow which they will not put themselves through again.
One might contrast today’s church with the early church. The early church were persecuted, beaten, imprisoned, driven from their homes, stoned, and killed yet they kept on inviting people to take part in the Way. Today one person says no to us and we are never going to invite again!
Winston Churchill said “success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm” In the same way invitation gives the Christian the opportunity of experiencing rejections and through them see the fruit of self-control emerge.