Getting back to hospitality

It’s been a long time since most of us had anyone around our kitchen tables outside of our own households but this week with the easing of restrictions the possibilities for everyday hospitality are growing again, praise God!

We know that the bible commands us to ‘practice hospitality’ (Romans 12:13) and I think I see two interpretations of that word practice.

Firstly it should be a habit, in that we should be in the habit of practicing it, not avoiding it completely but also not making it a one off ‘only for special occasions’ kind of thing of it.

Secondly I think practice implies that we might get out of the habit of doing it and therefore might need a few goes at it to get up to speed or find it easier. It’s hardly surprising that many of us will be feeling anxious and perhaps even a bit of fear at opening up our homes and our lives again to others after such a long period of isolation.

Thankfully we have a God who delights to hear our prayers and concerns and who by the Holy Spirit can give us strength to face the things we find difficult and be more Christ-like. We often read of Jesus enjoying meals with friends and strangers in all kinds of places, and that can inspire us to be creative with our hospitality and invitations.

If you’re apprehensive about getting started then go for something small to begin with, coffee with one friend in a café and then maybe work up to hosting someone for a simple meal. If you’re a bit of an extrovert like me and lockdown has felt tough, then remember biblical hospitality isn’t just about loving your friends and family, all of us are commanded to love our neighbours as ourselves and so there’s a need to host people outside of our church and social bubbles! But one step at a time, for now let’s pray God would give us the opportunities and the desire to get back in the habit and practice hospitality.

In Christ,

More about the author :

Iain Ridley

In a previous life, Iain was an actor and restauranteur. He now leads the Serve ministry at Dundonald Church - helping everyone to feel connected, to belong and joining in.

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