“Planning the Party: The Welcome”

Rev. John Shaver

Sunday, September 8, 2019 at 9:00am and 10:30am

BULLETIN LISTEN NOW Planning the Party_Post “…extend hospitality to strangers.”
                                            -Romans 12:13

One of the joys of parenthood is getting to view some of the exciting moments we sometimes forget in the realm of adulthood. A few years ago, one of the girls came home from a birthday party, sharing all that had happened: “Guess what we did?” “We had so much fun!” “Guess how late we stayed up?” “Everybody was so nice!” You can imagine what a blessing it was to hear these statements after starting a new school year.

After hearing about the party, I thought isn’t that what we would hope to hear about the church (except maybe the part about staying up late)? All the statements were her way of saying, “I felt so welcome!”

Welcome. It’s such a common word. We find it on floor mats outside of entryways. We see it on road signs as we enter a new state. We hear it as we enter a store or restaurant.

The call to welcome another is found throughout the Bible. In ancient times when a traveler came to town, they waited by the well, and the community was expected to house and feed the visitor for the night. As odd as it is to our ears in 2019, these were usually people relatively unknown to the community.

As I think about the months ahead at SDUMC, we have many opportunities to share in this biblical tradition. Don’t worry; I’m not going to ask you to take any extreme risks. What I would ask you (and I’m asking myself, too) is that you would pray about inviting someone to Open Door Sunday, on September 15th (and many other ministries and events we host at the church).

First, take some time to think about a friend who you know doesn’t have a church community. Second, pray about inviting and then share an invitation. Third, let us join together as a church family and carry on the great tradition of biblical welcome that so many of us have experienced at SDUMC!

I look forward to worshipping with you at 8 AM, 9 AM, or 10:30 AM this Sunday!

Grace and Peace, John

Leave a Comment