As I type, we are eleven days, one hour, and twenty minutes from the moment where the gates swing open and Church at the Ballpark ’13 goes into full gear. So today’s question: Who are you bringing with you?
Events like Church at the Ballpark are custom-made for guests, especially guests who wouldn’t normally attend a traditional church service. We all have ’em: those friends who respond to an invitation with “Ah, you know, if I came to your church the roof would probably cave in.” (Great news: the ballpark has no roof. Problem solved!)
Or, “I just don’t have the right clothes for church.” Well, (a) the standard Summit weekend attire is always casual, and (b) on September 15th it’s going to be super-casual. (Think t-shirts, shorts, and possibly mustard stains from concession stand hot dogs.)
And perhaps my favorite: “I just don’t trust those organized religious types. I feel like they’re just a bunch of bull.” (Absolutely. A big one. He overlooks left field and smoke is gonna come out of his nose when Pastor J.D. makes a good point.)
So this is your opportunity: invite your friends. Invite your co-workers. Invite your neighbors and family members and classmates and roommates. This will be a service unlike anything they’re expecting, and most importantly, it will be an opportunity for them to take a clear step of faith. Think about it…your act of faith (inviting a friend) could lead to their act of faith (responding to the Gospel).
So how do you invite? So glad you asked. Here are some easy ways:
- Go viral. On Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, you should use the #churchattheballpark hashtag and start promoting like crazy. You can grab a Twibbon for your profile picture (and just repeat that word: Twibbon. Twibbon. Twibbon. Because it’s fun.) Use the picture in this post or previous posts (linked below) for your blog, Evites, whatever.
- Get personal. Don’t hide behind your social media profiles. Walk across the street. Pick up the phone. Knock on the cubicle next door. Make the ask, and get ready to be surprised at what God may do.
- Grab some flyers. We’ve printed up thousands of handy-dandy inviter flyers for you to use. The good news? Many of you have already grabbed them, because we ran completely out at some campuses last weekend. The better news? We’re printing thousands more, and will have them ready for you this Saturday and Sunday. Keep a stack in your car, in your purse, in your Timbuk2 bag, and use them as a conversation piece. Give them to your barista, your grocery bagger, or your restaurant server (with a healthy 20% tip, of course). Ask to hang one up on the community bulletin board at your Starbucks, Panera, or other favorite hangout. Blanket the Triangle with these things: it’s litter with an evangelistic twist.
In 2011, we saw over 300 people take a step of faith and respond to the Gospel. Many of those were people who had not attended the Summit before, but were there because of the invitation of a friend. So think: who do you have in your life who needs the life-transforming power of the Gospel? Who has told you “no” to dozens of church invitations, but might just say “yes” to this one? Who has God put in your path today?
Who are you bringing with you?
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