I BELIEVE the heartbeat for true and authentic community is hospitality. And so often, hospitality begins in our homes around the kitchen table.
Yes, there are times we must rest and enjoy time alone, but nothing beats getting folks around our tables for food and drinks together.
Furthermore, I also believe hospitality is the heartbeat of the Christian faith. It is about opening up our hearts and our homes and welcoming others to our table; a table where:
• Conversations happen.
• Stories are shared.
• Visions are birthed,
• Friendships are formed.
Hebrews (13:2) reminds us to “not neglect to show hospitality to strangers. Why, some have extended hospitality to angels without ever knowing it.”
Of course, we will always have our family and friends who we live life and share food with many times. However, I believe the challenge concerning intentional hospitality is to extend our tables to include people who are outside our circles.
Only @sniequist could combine food and prayer and scripture and recipes into a spiritual practice! It’s just brilliant. And most importantly, it offers a practical pathway for those of us who desire to move into more whole-hearted prayer. Love this… pic.twitter.com/v3Zp0oEwt2— Aaron Niequist (@aaronieq) April 10, 2022
Shauna Niequist, in her book, Bread and Wine, writes: “The heart of hospitality is about creating space for someone to feel seen and heard and loved. It's about declaring your table a safe zone, a place of warmth and nourishment.”
We are all aware that many people are dreading this winter due to the rising costs of living. Many within our communities are already finding it hard to eat and to heat their homes. Perhaps this presents the opportunity to those of us who have a little more to extend our tables of welcome, to reach out to someone who is not only longing to be seen and heard, but who would value our help during this difficult season.
Friends, if we are more fortunate than others, then let’s build a bigger table. Let’s put hospitality into practice and reach out to our neighbours. You never know... you may just be entertaining an angel.