Invite Christ In

The following was recently published in the Vermilion Standard.

As a pastor I have the privilege and challenge of guiding people through some very difficult situations in their lives.  If anyone ever questioned whether life is complicated, I can say, with some authority, that it is!   Life has its moments filled with difficulty, trials, challenges, mourning, grief, disappointment, rejection, confusion, etc.  This is, of course, not news to you and something each of us is intimately familiar with.   It is in these times where I am often called upon to provide guidance and direction.

Although this often seems like a daunting task, I am reminded of my role as a minister: to simply, but profoundly, invite Jesus Christ in.  My role is not to provide a simple answer, but to invite Christ in.  Through prayer and the ministry of Scripture (the Bible), I can lead the action of inviting Christ Jesus into the pain, sorrow, grief, relationship, conflict, struggle, and temptation, reminding people of the fact that God offers comfort, wisdom, peace, joy, and strength.
In your life today, what does it mean to invite Christ in?  When things feel like they are being pushed apart, what does it mean to invite Christ in?  When your marriage is falling apart and you are not sure what to do next, what does it mean to invite Christ in?  When you have no idea what to do in a situation or with a relationship, what does it mean to invite Christ in?
Sometimes this means an opening to what the Bible (God’s Word) would say in the situation.  Sometimes it means praying and verbally expressing a desire for Christ to come into the situation and give His guidance and direction.
The Bible is filled with reminders that Jesus, God, never forces his way into anyone’s life but He is always waiting to come in!  God allows us to have the free choice of participation, because love is never love when forced.
Scripture tell us that God loves extravagantly (perfectly expressed through Christ) and can do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine.  Therefore, where do you need to invite Christ in today?  What are you waiting for?

“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.(Ephesians 3:20-21, NIV)

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