“You’re invited!” It’s likely we’ll hear (or want to hear) these words more often in the next few weeks. From parties to programs, proper etiquette reminds us to inform the host of our intentions to attend. But the busyness of the season can lead to amnesia of good manners. And yet, whatever guest list we’re on, there are a few RSVPS I don’t want to forget.
Thanksgiving Day highlights the habit of giving thanks unto the Lord. But after the celebratory meal, we’re invited to dash off to give our dollars to retailers. The shopper in me must confess, the invitation to join the crowd is tempting. But my redeemed soul knows I need a little help.
I enjoy a good hunt for a bargain so if you’re a power shopper, shop on. But I also enjoy the benefits of staying within my budget. I’m making my list and checking it twice to make sure I don’t veer off track. Ultimately, I’ll Rely on the Savior’s Victory and Power to rein in my impulsive habits. Hence, my first RSVP of the season.
“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” 1 Corinthians 10:13
But another invitation awaits me. My brother, his two children, and my sister are traveling seven hours to spend the day of thanks with us. I’m excited about their visit. The host in me wants to strive for a perfectly set table and the taste of culinary success.
However, my unconditionally loved status reminds me of a different priority. It is a blessing to have another day and another opportunity to celebrate God’s goodness with loved ones. If visions of perfection start dancing in my head, I’ll Rely on the Savior’s Victory and Plan.
Time spent with family and friends shouldn’t just focus on the impression I’ll make. It is the impression God will leave as I invite Him into the interaction.
“For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love.” Galatians 5:14
As we kick-off the holiday season, our society’s focus can shift with every headline in the news. Whether it is the rush of Black Friday shoppers or the newest threat to the world, it is easy to become preoccupied with what will or will not happen.
But I’m convinced, life is to be lived based on what Christ has done for us even when we are challenged by what happens to or around us. This is not an invitation to grow distant from a crisis or indifferent to our pain. It is an invitation to Rely on the Savior’s Victory and Promise in any and every situation.
“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39
Yes, this season carries the potential for many invitations. Hopefully, we’ll make happy memories and have grateful reflections. But if the invitations are few or a door is difficult to face, here’s some good news: God is with us and He is on the other side. I’m praying we’ll seize the moment and trust the Savior. It is a powerful and peaceful response that brings hope in the heart and joy to the soul.