I remember as a young girl the pure joy I felt whenever I received an invitation to a friend’s birthday party. To know that I had been specially selected, uniquely chosen, personally invited to be part of a celebration. Just the thought of party dresses, cake and ice cream, and simple games like pin-the-tale-on-the-donkey (yes, it sounds lame, my friends, but it was fun back “in the day.” Honest-to-goodness, it was!) made my heart flutter with excitement and expectation. Oh, yes, and picking out the birthday present was almost just as much fun as the party itself. I could hardly wait to see my gift unwrapped and the happy look on my friend’s face.
My little party invitation always found a resting place in a prominent spot in our home. Heaven forbid if I let my mother forget that important date. She got no rest until she called in my RSVP. In my mind, to be invited anywhere meant someone, somewhere liked me enough to include me. Me, the little girl with the fake eye who was sometimes very insecure and unsure of herself.
I’ve been pondering a lot lately on the word, “Come…” as seen in Scripture.
“Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
“Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to Me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.” Isaiah 55:1-2
God is such a gentleman. I’m convinced that if there’s a deep south in heaven God lives there with sunflowers and magnolia blossoms growing in His backyard. In spite of all my crazy, mixed-up, chaotic ways He comes to me. Me, the big girl with the fake eye who is still unsure of herself sometimes. Come. Come to Me. He doesn’t come barging in on a John Deere tractor. He doesn’t come riding in on a bull. He doesn’t yell or scream or order my naughty self to sit down. He knocks gently on my heart’s door. When I look through clouded window panes of muscle and tissue there He stands and my heart melts. I can picture it in my mind’s eye. Always there. Always knocking. Always waiting. Patiently. For little-ol’-me to get tired of my busyness, tired of my craziness, tired of my selfishness and just visit with Him. I can even hear His voice in a deep southern drawl…Let’s have us a visit.
Oh dear. My cheeks are getting a salty-tear-washing at this very moment because sometimes I just cannot fathom that the Omniscient, Omnipresent, Omnipotent One wants to spend time with me. When I think of what Jesus did to make a way for me to the Father, pouring forth, bleeding out, giving His very life…how can I cast aside His invitation? How can I stick it in a drawer and forget about it? How can I allow it to gather dust or pile my indifference on top of it?
Come to Me. Do you get this? ‘Cause I don’t. But I don’t think I’m supposed to get it. I’m just supposed to accept it. I’m supposed to put Jesus’ invitation in a visible place in my home and never forget it’s there. This beautiful, open invitation with my name on it. I don’t have to wait until I’ve got it all together. I don’t even have to put on a party dress. I don’t have to serve cake. I don’t have to play games. I don’t have to spend any money on gifts.
I can’t put a price tag on anything Jesus offers. Things like rest. Contentment. Satisfaction. Soul food. Thirst-quenching Water. Priceless.
I love to start my day with Jesus. He doesn’t just like me. He loves me. He includes me in His family. When He says to me, “Come and have breakfast,” (John 21:12) I want my heart to be so open to His presence that I don’t even hesitate to set a place for Him at my table. I don’t want to hesitate to pour Him some tea and pour out my heart. I don’t want to hesitate to share my life and share sweet fellowship. I don’t want to hesitate to soak in His presence and soak in His Word.
I don’t want to hesitate when Jesus comes calling because really this is the perfect gift. His gift to me. My gift to Him. The gift of time. Of presence. Precious.
Wow. What a way to start the day.
Come. What an invitation to ponder.
Here’s another thought to ponder…there’s an invitation that still sits in visible places. Jesus is still knocking on heart’s doors. The Perfect Gentleman. He stands. He waits. He freely gives.
One day there will be a celebration above all celebrations. Plans are already underway. Preparations are already being made. There’s a place card at this table with my name on it because I’ve already sent in my RSVP. I’ve accepted this free gift. I’ll be among those who’ll rejoice forever knowing I’ve been specially selected, uniquely chosen and personally invited to attend THE party of a lifetime. Oh happy day! It makes my heart flutter with excitement and expectation. I can hardly wait to see the happy look on my Friend’s face.
“Come!” Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life.” Revelation 22:17