Home and Heart

While talking with friends recently, we discussed the gift of hospitality and exercising the gift for love of others. One part is the motivation we get when we realize that hospitality is part of what makes a house a home.

When you were a kid, you may have made a hideout. Blankets all over the dining room. Flashlight and snacks. But what made it more fun after it was built and furnished? Sharing it! You chose your special person and invited them in. The grand tour was a joy. The company made it cozy.

When you see a gorgeous sunset or a breath-taking ocean shore or a majestic mountain range, what is your second response (after you stand in awe)? You have to share it with somebody, anybody. It’s better together!

We are created for community.

A house that is only a place to hide, to retreat from the world and never share it, is a colder place. Opening up our hearts leads to opening up our homes. Sharing our home is part of sharing ourselves, which is part of loving others.

When we open up our house and share hospitality, home becomes a warm haven of rest and rejoicing, celebration and shared struggles. Memories are made and shared. Traditions are sometimes even created, giving us joys past, present and future. The home is a richer place for all who live in it and  visit it. We enjoy it more because we have included others.

If we have been blessed with a home, it is an opportunity — and a heart-warming joy — to bless others with the same.

Consider: "How Should I Exercise Hospitality?"

This book is a quick encouragement designed to grow the practice of hospitality in our lives. Below is an excerpt from How Should I Exercise Hospitality? by Rebecca VanDoodewaard.

It also brings the blessing of skill. Practicing hospitality is the best way to learn how to do it well. As you discover what works best for your family, how to change your routine to fit food prep, how to keep conversation going…you will get better and better at it. the apostle tells us to “practice hospitality” because that is what all of us need — practice. Nobody is born a perfect host of hostess. We all have to learn. Consistent obedience is the best way to become skilled in opening your home and ministering to others… Like any skill, good hosting can be acquired. These skills can be taught; they can be learned; they can be mastered. Let’s practice!


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