“Come and see,” John 1:39 (NLT)
The first invitation of Christ to a curious seeker is “Come and see.” Check it out. He is never demanding or forceful. “Whosoever will may come …” The decision is yours. God always takes the initiative. “Jesus came to seek and save those who were lost.” Had God not come to where we are first, we would never be able to go to where He is. Love reached out. Love reached down. How thankful we should be for a love that looked beyond our faults and saw our need. Have you experienced a love like that? God’s love is unconditional! There is nothing you could do to earn His love anymore than there is anything you could do to cause Him to stop loving you. What a relief! When Jesus invites us to come to Him, His love is reaching out to embrace us with grace and acceptance. With that offer comes another invitation. “Follow Me.” Curious seekers will come and go; but, disciples will follow Him. Are you a curious seeker? Great. Listen for the next invitation. Your soul has been awakened to a new reality, a spiritual one, the possibility of experiencing a personal relationship with Jesus that is transforming. Take the next step and commit your life to Him. Follow Him. Jesus says, “Follow Me and I will make you…” As we follow Him, our lives are transformed! Baptism is a beautiful picture of one who has responded to His invitation to follow Him. Still, there’s another invitation. “Learn from Me.” Listen to what The Message says in Matthew 11:28-30:
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
As you learn from Jesus, you’ll discover yet another dimension to His invitation. “Abide with Me.” John 15 describes it well. As the branch abides in the vine to receive its very life, we are to abide in Him. As we abide in Him, we find our voice and mission. We become what I call The Divine Echo. It becomes as natural as breathing to echo the invitation we received in the beginning as we invite others around us to come and see!