When we were kids, there was a invitation offered on many days. There was no plan, no agenda, no schedule, and no parameters. The invitation was to play. The play was whatever the group came up with. For me it could be freeze tag, riding bikes, exploring the woods just beyond our neighborhood, climbing trees, swinging, playing house, or the universal “hanging out”. We wanted to do something with someone. We wanted connection. We wanted socialization. We wanted to relieve our stress, or at least our parents. It all came down to a simple question, “Wanna play?”
Somewhere along the way, many of us seem to lose the ability to offer this simple invitation. Our grown-up invitations must be invitations of purpose. We invite others to consume something or do something. We have parameters. We have to have a reason for doing. We don’t know how to simply be with others the way we were with them as children.
Look around you. There are many adults just waiting for an invitation. They are waiting to be invited to be a part of your social circle. They are waiting to be invited to be with you and your friends at church. They are waiting on the sidelines, hoping to be included. Our job, as Jesus followers, is to invite others to be a part of the group. We are to find ways to invite others to be in God’s presence. Sometimes this invitation is to worship. Sometimes this invitation is to “hang out”. Sometimes it is explicit in mentioning that Jesus will be present. Sometimes we offer the invitation hoping that the invitee will discover Jesus’ presence.
Offer the invitation. Do you wanna play?