Celebrating Alpha

Celebrating Alpha

I often get asked how many people attended Alpha and to share the stories of those who came to faith. These are definitely things worth celebrating, but one question I rarely get asked is how many people invited to Alpha or to share a story of someone who invited to Alpha. Those stories demonstrate the work of Christ changing our hearts towards the lost, and each believer’s quiet, unseen investment over the long haul—what it took BEFORE the invitation even occurred to Alpha. What I most want you to know about the Alpha we are about to wrap up is that God is growing our church’s heart to reach the lost. He is answering your prayers for revival by shaping your desire to do life with those outside the church and those hurt by the church, your grit and determination to keep investing in those friendships through all life’s ups and downs, and to be ready to speak and to invite as the Holy Spirit prompts you. The fruit that comes from that type of investment can take a while, so I want you to know as you labor on so that we can see and celebrate this together. I’m so proud of you and grateful to be part of your church family. 

I think my favorite moment of this Alpha will forever be the opening night. Observing the surprise and delight from so many Chapel Hillians when their guests showed up was So. Much. Fun! The rush of excitement as they spotted a friend, the joyful hugs as they entered, the warm introductions they made to other friends. The emotions were tangible! From the nervous excitement from guests on arrival, it was clear stepping into a church was a risk for many, and the inviters felt so honored that their friends would trust them enough to show up and give it a try. As people left the room at the end of the night many commented that they would be back, and they meant it.  

We have had lots of consistent attenders this Alpha. I give credit to your relationships with those friends for that too. But you know what, even if they had not come back, I’d still be celebrating. People often come for as many weeks as they feel ready for. Saying no to an invitation or not coming back for another week doesn’t always mean no forever. And I’m rejoicing that you were faithful to God’s prompting to have those conversations in the first place. 

So I want to say thank you to each one of you who made an invitation, however it was received. I know that those who came and found Jesus through this Alpha represent just a small sample of the larger picture of those invited, so as we finish this Alpha and start preparing ourselves for the next Alpha I’m prayerful that the Lord would send more workers out into the harvest. 

Pastor Rachel