Monday, October 27, 2014
Hospitality ~ the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.
Are you hospitable? Are you friendly? Do you open up your home and heart to others?
The Bible teaches us that as believers we should be known for our acts of hospitality and yet, so many do not do this. We make excuses. We find ways to avoid it. Or we miss the bigger picture of the definition and don't realize it's not just about being hospitable to friends, but strangers also.
I also think hospitality extends not to just our homes but the way we receive and greet people in church. Are you welcoming to visitors? Do you go out of your way to include others in your circle? Do you make them feel happy to be there? Or do you give them the cold shoulder or look at them with suspicion? Or perhaps you spend the time before and after the service only speaking with your close friends.
I know many would say, "Of course, I welcome visitors!" But just a perfunctory greeting is not what I'm talking about. Go out of your way to spend more than a few moments speaking with them. Show them where the coffee is. Give them a bulletin if they don't have it. Offer to sit with them. Put aside YOU for a moment to make someone else feel important.
It's such a simple thing and yet one that is overlooked quite often.
Hebrews 13:2 ~ Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.
Yesterday, even though our service starts at 10 a.m., Dan went out of his way to go pick up an older gentleman who has no way to get to church. We had found out that he has not been eating well and we were having a potluck dinner afterwards so Dan wanted to make sure he was fed. We sent him home with leftovers too. Dan could have said, "As the pastor, I need to prepare." but he didn't. He took time out of his busy Sunday to pick him up and take him home. That is hospitality. Setting aside our own desires and needs for those of another.
Let's work hard at showing this wonderful gift to other people! Don't make the excuse, "I don't have this spiritual gift." It may not be your strong point, but reaching out to others is required of ALL believers! And you never know, you may just be entertaining an angel! :-)
This week I'm thankful for blessings #2211-2220.
2211. Enjoying breakfast with a friend.
2212. A better week for Nathan.
2213. A confirmation from the Lord.
2214. A husband who sets aside his needs for those of another.
2215. Ruby red apples.
2216. A peaceful Sunday.
2217. Church dinners.
2218. Rows of hard work.
2219. Living in a country where I'm still free to study God's word.
2220. Practicing hospitality.