June 26, 2019


Being Hospitable

I grew up in a home with a revolving door. I had three siblings, but I don't think I could even name all of the people who stayed with us for a month, or a summer, or a year, or more. I loved that about our home. That others were welcome--and though my mom says she doesn't have the gift of hospitality, I would say

The Proof is in the Pudding, Mom!

My husband and I have been talking about hospitality a lot these days. Not sure why, but living in our little home--our sweet tiny space that we love, in this beautiful community--our one heartache is that we just don't have space. We have folks over for dinner. We offer up my office for sleeping when we can, but we would like to do more. We would like to have room for two people, or five, or thirteen! We'd like to feed them, and do their laundry, and send them home with kumquat marmalade.

 I'm curious about your thoughts on hospitality. There are so many beautiful traditions around the world, and I fear that here, in America, with our phones, and our binge watching, and our Career Goals, that we're losing out on Giving. On Hosting. On Loving through the small actions of a clean room, and a hot cup of coffee, offered with two hands, to guests in the morning...



Published: June 26, 2019 | Filed under: Home

Comments (4)
Elizabeth said:
July 1, 2019 @ 3:54 PM

This is a really difficult question. I have struggled with having local friends since I moved and got married; people to merely have over at all (not sleeping over but just for a meal). Most people where I live (near NYC) both have jobs and if they have kids, then they are even more busy. Add to this the fact that we have 2 churches, one near and one far, it has complicated things further. This is an example of how we must deal with how things are now; hospitality was more common in decades past; in my Great Grandmother's time it was normal to go to evening church and have people over afterwards. Immigrant communities are also more likely to keep hospitality. We have to deal with/come to terms with what we can do (i.e. if you have a small house or a complicated living situation or what-have-you ... it is very possible that it is just NOT possible to have people over / over night) and with where we live in location and in time - social media - singles working to survive; couples living in high cost areas both working to survive; I think the fact that you have others over for tea or dinner is a really big thing. Hospitality is having a loving heart towards others; you have this; this is where it all begins; what one can do outside of this depends on what our circumstances are at the moment; like are we in a busy spell with work or family (or are we in poor health?)... then we may not be able to do as much; when circumstances allow, and our hearts are open; then people will come; I know for me it has happened often when I am able to put my own priorities aside or the event/dinner/lunch/tea is my priority. There are seasons when we have a lot of other things to tend to and can't do as much hospitality as we wish; it is not always easy to discern. But it begins with a heart open to caring and loving others and this I see in you... love to you! Elizabeth https://eroosje.blogspot.com/

jane g meyer replied:
July 17, 2019 @ 4:03 PM

Thank you for this thoughtful comment, Elizabeth. So true how our lives, circumstances, energy level all dictate how much we can offer to others. Sometimes I think we err on the side of wanting our lives to be or look" perfect" before we can let others in, and I know I am sometimes tempted by this. I wonder if hospitality is being redefined all over the world, or if it's just in our western culture where there have been so many shifts and changes in the last 50 years...

Ashley Zappe said:
July 3, 2019 @ 2:38 PM

Well, it would be easier to give hospitality if all our friends didn't live 40 minutes away! ...but, nowadays, our main form of hospitality is as foster parents, giving a safe and loving temporary home to minors.

jane g meyer said:
July 17, 2019 @ 3:57 PM

That is so beautiful, Ashley. That is one of the truest, grittiest, most important ways to be hospitable... Thank you

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