The Trouble with Invitations

Invitations come in all shapes and sizes today. By email or text message; through Facebook or a personal invite; some even come the old-fashioned way of snail mail. But no matter how they come, they can also cause a fair amount of trouble.

A lack of invitations can leave us feeling unloved, unimportant… even unwanted. None of this is true from God’s perspective. He values us enough to have sent Jesus to die for our sin. But the enemy will use a lack of invitations to try to get us down on ourselves.

Don’t go there! Find your identity first and foremost as a child of God. (1 John 3:1)

On the other end of the spectrum is the issue of too many invitations and this is a big problem today. For a variety of reason we are obsessed with overloading our calendars with activity after activity after activity…

We have somehow come to equate hyperactivity with an abundant life but something just isn’t adding up. We are doing more and more but we are statistically more miserable than ever. Why? Because we have substituted activities for genuine, deep relationships.

Therapist Will Miller, author of Refrigerator Rights, makes this observation.

“If you talk to any therapist today, the problems we see mostly are mood disorders: depression, anxiety, loneliness, and social detachment. As blessed as we are as Americans, as prosperous as we are, there’s all this depression. So where is it coming from? I’m convinced it’s rooted in the loss of ‘refrigerator rights’ relationships.”

A person with refrigerator rights is someone who can come into our home and feel comfortable going to our refrigerator to make a sandwich without our permission. Miller argues that too many Americans suffer mentally and emotionally because they have too few of these kinds of relationships.

No one had more demands on his time than Jesus. And while Jesus was always busy, He was never in a hurry. His discernment in saying “Yes” or “No” to people and their invitations came from first saying “Yes” to intimacy with the Father. (Mark 1:35 ff) It’s a way of life He’s willing to teach us.

Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. (Matthew 11:28-30 – The Message)

Are we willing to learn from Him?

***

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2 Comments

Filed under Children of God, Choices, God's Will, Grace, intimacy with the Lord, Jesus

2 responses to “The Trouble with Invitations

  1. Kent

    Unhurried busyness seems like a contradiction. Thanks for the challenge.

    By the way, in addition to being a very insightful therapist and author, Dr. Will Miller has been the pastor at University Church at Purdue for a few years. His blog is at: http://web.me.com/drwillm/UC/Dr._Will_Blog/Dr._Will_Blog.html

    • Hey Kent! I got the phrase from John Ortberg and it’s the idea that Jesus was always active (busy) but never so hurried or rushed that He couldn’t stop and be present with people. It caught me off guard the first time I read it and took me a bit to wrap my head around it.

      I didn’t know that Dr Miller was at Purdue or was a minister. Thanks for the blog info!

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