“Real and costly hospitality requires a paradigm shift for Westerners because it endangers certain sacred cows: time, money, privacy, autonomy, and especially choice. Hospitality is a drain on your free time, discretionary income, emotional energy, and independence. It may mean we have to limit our career opportunities to maintain roots and relationships. It may mean that we have to stop scheduling every last minute of our lives, so that we can leave space for unexpected guests. It may mean that we have to place ourselves intentionally in situations and communities where such encounters might occur. It may mean we have to open our hearts and shut off our smart phones.” (from arthouseamerica.com)
This reminds me of what I am so very grateful for and that is the opportunity to entertain. I did not know this yesterday when my husbands mother and her friend came in to join us unexpectedly, for lunch. Nor did I realize how much this Godly woman would impress my family. I admit that entertaining is something that I try to avoid at all costs. Typically it leaves a sour taste in my mouth. I am counting the minutes – imagining all the things I should be, could be doing instead.
Yesterday was no different. There was only a plan for my mother in law and her friend to drive to our home to pick up my father in law before their long drive back home to Michigan. In fact, in the original plan, my husband was to bring my father in law to them. Yet the Lord impressed on me (I see it now – I merely thought I was being spiteful before as did my husband) that they needed to come here. And so my husband was forced to guide them by phone to our home. Even in the moments they first walked into our home…..Do we have enough lunch for everyone? Sure enough, we had just enough to feed everyone. No leftovers; not a crumb. Glory to God!
Rom 12:13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.
As we sat and fellowshipped with this Sister in Christ; what stories this amazing woman shared of her life. Her beginnings, in the church – her grandchildren are homeschooled (high schoolers – we aren’t there yet) and the miracles that God has done in her life; in her time. Such wisdom from this older woman I would not have known had we not opened our home to her, unexpected or not. Practicing grace – practicing serving – have I mentioned that my reading and my prayer have been about just this? God is so amazing – how He puts something on your heart and then opens the door for you to be able to practice just what He has been speaking in your ear.
Heb 13:1-2 Let brotherly love continue. Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Oh how I have always dreaded; avoided and discouraged entertaining others. Yet what a joy it was. Something even my little ones cannot stop talking about. How much fun they had as she sat helping them create plans and boats and bikes and cars with their legos while the rest of us sipped our coffee and talked about home school and life; adjusting and growing in the church; building and keeping family strong and close – So much wisdom. I am so thankful for the opportunity to meet her. And to share my home and all that we had. And I am so grateful that I had the chance to serve one of His people.
All my anxiety, all my worries cast upon Him as I say”Thank you Jesus for friends, for fellowship, for enough.”