The word uninvited has cropped up numerous times in my world over the last few weeks.
It's not a word I like. It goes against my world view of loving your fellow man and doing good to all especially those of the household of faith (Gal. 6:10).
Uninvited teems with negative, unkind, unloving connotations.
I recently came across it in an article about a Tibetan Monk who said, "When I was younger I was always called 'the uninvited guest of the universe'." His mother had been unwed when he was born, and his birth had been an embarrassment to the family, so this was his nickname, uninvited.
The word also appeared as a title to a new book by Lysa Terkuerst, a Christian author. The book was written to help women who do not feel welcomed by the world to feel welcomed by God. It is to point them to the one who loves unconditionally and forgives beyond measure.
Uninvited builds fences. It keeps people out.
Then later that week, I received an invitation to a wedding. I was an invited guest.
The door opened, and I was hugged and welcomed with joy.
I believe we are called to be the ones to welcome, to hug, to receive with joy.
I believe that unlike the monk who was considered the 'uninvited guest of the universe' we as Christ followers are called to be the inviters of the universe.
Jesus in Matthew 22 tells of a king who was giving a wedding banquet for his son. He had invited several guests who refused to come. So, the king sent out his servants (that's us) to invite anyone and everyone to fill his banquet room. Our job isn't to decide who is worthy to be invited, or job is simply to give the invitation.
Uninvited is a terrible state to be in, don't leave anyone feeling left on the fringes. Instead, invite them in and show them the way to the Father.