Invitation and Promise
"Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty." Psalms 91:1 NIV
The Bible is full of verses that include an invitation and a promise. In today's verse, we are told if we dwell -- the invitation, we will find rest -- God's promise. Here are two more verses as illustrations. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28) The invitation from Jesus -- "Come to me,” the promise again is rest. Once again, words from Jesus in John 14:1-3, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am." The invitation to believe in Jesus, the promise is twofold, he is preparing a place for us, and he's coming back for us.
An invitation requires action, an RSVP -- yes or no. After consulting our calendars, checking our packed schedules, and prioritizing the offer, how will we respond? “Yes, I can’t wait, thank you for the invitation,” or “I regret that I must decline.” Remember, only those who are special receive an invitation from the host. Our presence is desired; they want to share something good with us. Christ, our host, extends an offer of peace, refuge, rest, and eternal life, but we must take action; we must accept.
God of fulfilled promises, we give thanks for your invitation. Lord, we confess we often ignore your invitation; we put it aside in our busyness. We have intentions of accepting, but as more time passes, it becomes a lesser priority until we forget it entirely. Forgive us, we pray. Please help us to listen for your invitation and readily accept that we may experience the fullness of your promise. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.