It's not really a strap line that will pull the punters. As a church we've opted for. the more appealing...
It summarises what we want to be about as we seek to share the fantastic news, which is Jesus. That's why we've backed it up with these three statements.
Now I believe that Pray Go Invite should be at the heart of my day to day life. As a Christian I don't just believe that Jesus is the best news in the world, I don't just believe that He is the most important news in the world, I believe that He is the difference between eternal life and death for every human being.
But in my Bible reading this morning I found that whilst Jesus agreed with our strap line, he added an uncomfortable extra phrase. Suffer!
Luke 10:2 He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. 3 Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.
Jesus tells them to pray for workers to go and tell people the gospel. He then tells them to "Go!" and answer their own prayer by being workers in the harvest field. But he adds that this will mean that they become targets for people who are hostile to the God they are serving.
Now my problem is that I like comfort. I like being liked. I like the quiet life. The walking in the park with winter sun on my back and the kids happily gambling through the bracken sort of life. The being admired by family and friends for being a decent bloke sort of life. The being popular and recognised and greeted cordially by passersby sort of life.
I don't like the idea of being eaten alive! Or even being partially mauled. I'm not even that keen on being threatened. I don't want to be a lamb amongst wolves! I don't want to Pray Go Suffer!
That's why I need to remember that it's not about me. It's about Jesus. Or as Jesus said to the 72 disciples he's sending out in Luke 10.
16 “Whoever listens to you listens to me; whoever rejects you rejects me; but whoever rejects me rejects him who sent me.”
It's about His word and His power. It's about His glory and His love. Interestingly Moses suffered from the same problem as I do when faced with being told to go and give God's message to the brutal Pharaoh. He received a similar encouragement from the Lord as Jesus gave to his disciples:
Exodus 6:30 But Moses said to the Lord, “Since I speak with faltering lips, why would Pharaoh listen to me?” 7:1 Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have made you like God to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron will be your prophet.
So I'm going to "Pray". Then "Go" with my faltering lips and fearful heart. And bleat at a few wolves. Because incredibly Jesus says he can speak through people like us, his feeble followers. And when He does He changes wolves to lambs!