Pastor Linda Settles
The Invitation: To Follow
THE INVITATION: TO FOLLOW
Back in the day, I can remember being so excited at getting my official membership certificate for the Jackson 5 fan club! Yeah, back in THAT day! The old school way to follow the stars was fan clubs. Now we have social media. Swipe left, swipe right, like and share, follow me. Social media has many ways to express your likes and dislikes, and many ways that you can keep up with your favorite celebrities.
Some also follow their favorite athletes – collecting baseball cards, memorabilia, those funny bobbleheads, knowing all their stats. We might call them fans - those who admire the talent of others.
And some are fans of Jesus. They collect crosses, jewelry, t-shirts, and plaques with Scripture, etc. They love the idea of a God who can part waters, turn water to wine, and even walk on water! But Jesus isn’t looking for fans. He’s looking for followers.
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him.
Matthew 4:18-20, NRSV
Jesus extended an invitation to the disciples, and by extension to us, to follow Him. But what does it mean to follow Jesus? He isn’t on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. He doesn’t have a publicist who keeps His face on the cover of magazines. He doesn’t have a viral video. So, how do you follow Jesus?
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.
Matthew 16:24, NRSV
One verse, with life-changing implications. Join us this Sunday for our new sermon series The Invitation. This week is The Invitation to Follow. What does it mean to go from being a fan to being a follower of Jesus? We’ll also celebrate Grandparent’s Day (one of my personal favs)! To register for worship, you can sign up at https://rsvp.church/r/gVufUAP4. You can also join us online at 10:00am. Livestream Worship is here: https://www.facebook.com/GreenTrailsUMC
The weekly worship videos can be found at www.umcgt.org.
Today we remember the victims and survivors of the attack on U.S. soil that happened on September 11, 2001. From the World Trade Center towers to the Pentagon, to a field in Shanksville, PA. May we never forget their lives, the sacrifices of first responders, those who are left to mourn, and the time when we as a nation put aside our political, racial, and every other difference, and came together to grieve and to support one another in a time of tragedy. We truly are stronger together!
May we continue to live in the spirit of 9/11 and seek ways to serve, encourage, and care for one another!