When we find something we love, like the best restaurant in town or the best vacationing spot, we can’t help but share it with others. In many ways, inviting people to church works just the same way; once you step into the environment, you want your family, friends, and neighbors to come along with you.
But sometimes inviting them to come to church with us requires persistence and patience. Maybe you’ve asked time and time again, and keep getting the same answer: “no.” Don’t give up––no one is too far for the love of God to reach.
Dee Womack and Chris Ohrn have been friends (and golfing rivals) since high school. While they are both successful in the business world, Dee wanted a better life for Chris. Dee and his family had been praying for Chris to reconnect with God, but Dee wasn’t sure that it would ever happen.
“I really thought Chris was unreachable. I never even thought it was a possibility––I would never be able to get to him.” -Dee
We understand why Dee felt this way. Dee had invited Chris to come with him to church many times before, but Chris never accepted the invitation. It can be really hard to reach out and be turned down over and over. But, as we see in Acts, God is not far away from anyone.
God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. -Acts 17:27
During a normal, everyday conversation last November, Dee invited Chris to come with him to Milestone once again. This time, out of the blue, Chris said yes. He went with Dee’s family to church. It was a day that he will never forget.
“I have not been involved in church in 21 years. I grew up in the church but got away from it at 18 years old; I had developed a really terrible outlook on Christians over the years. I really was almost unreachable…but through Dee and his family, and the encouragement and prayers of my mom and brother, I came to church and reconnected with God. They’ve all brought me into spiritual family.” –Chris
Through Sunday brunches after church, to playing golf with one another, Dee has encouraged Chris to get baptized, to join a men’s group, and to go through Values 301. The spiritual family that Chris has stepped into is helping him grow in his relationship with God. It’s been transformational for Chris, and for all who have seen how dramatically his life has changed.
God loves to surprise us with who He can bring home. He’s closer than you might think––just keep inviting, keep praying, and believe God will show up. This story is a great reminder that no one is unreachable.