Read: Mark 1:16–20; 2:13–17

As Jesus was walking along, He saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax booth, and He said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up and followed Him. Mark 2:14

Life with Jesus starts with an invitation. In our culture which values self-starters, people who take initiative, and those blessed with entrepreneurial spirit, we often forget the invitational nature of Jesus’ ministry with us. Jesus called the disciples away from the lives they had always known—and perhaps felt shackled to—to a new adventure that would prove to be the time of their lives. It is very possible that Peter, Andrew, James, and John mending their fishing nets and Levi at his tax booth were dying inside—wanting a life of deeper meaning where they could make a difference. However, the pathway to a new and enlivening existence did not commence as a result of the force of their own will. All they did was accept an invitation to take a walk with Jesus. Jesus made the first move, they simply responded.

Perhaps the way to a new and more meaningful life is not to suddenly decide to do something innovative and exciting that takes us in a different direction, but to simply accept invitations when they come our way. Living invitationally—accepting requests from others—may be the means by which Jesus himself welcomes us to walk in his ways.

What invitation have you received lately?

Lord, when I feel like I want to make changes in my life, I believe I must somehow take the initiative. I must assert myself—impress my will on a certain situation—in order to effect change. But what if the life You intend us to lead is a series of invitations You invite us to accept? What if the most faithful path forward in life is saying “yes” to the next invitation that comes my way? Perhaps an invitation is Your way of calling me to follow You. In Your name, I pray. AMEN.