I grew up going to stock car races in Moose Jaw, so you can imagine how happy I was, about 13 years ago, to hear that Estevan was getting a new dirt track.
In fact, I was one of the first people in the grandstands on the first night, and I have missed very few races since then. I have sat in those grandstands in the heat, through torrential downpours, and I have frozen out there more times than I care to remember, but it was always fun!
All through those years, I used to think “It would be fun to volunteer out here,” but I never did. I did not know anyone and I was not sure if I would be welcome, so I did not do anything about it.
This past winter, the speedway president was talking to my wife. She knew that I enjoyed the races, so she said, “Do you think Tim would like to help us out there?” Sara said, “Oh, I am sure he would. Why don’t you call him?”
Within minutes I received a call, an invitation and I signed up. And guess what! I had a ton of fun working at the speedway this past summer. It was a great experience!
Here is the thing though: had I not been invited, I never would have volunteered. Without the invitation, I would still be sitting in the grandstands.
That makes me wonder, “How many people think about God and church in that way?” In other words, how many people would really like to be part of things, or at least would like to come and check it out, but they are not sure if they would be welcome? Maybe they know that they need and would enjoy some spiritual direction, but they don’t know where to start.
Maybe they just think, “I don’t know anyone at church, so it would be awkward.” One of the questions that Sara and I are asked most frequently is, “Would it be okay for me to come to your church sometime?”
If you have ever thought like that, let me give you an invitation. Jesus says, “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).
Jesus is always saying “Come!” Your heavenly father always waits to welcome you home (see Luke 15). Rest, hope, forgiveness, peace and innumerable other blessings await.
Please come! You are always welcome here.