Welcoming people into your home can be a daunting task. And if you are anything like me, comparison can be the number one intimidating culprit. Is my house pretty enough? Is my house clean enough? My kitchen is outdated. Is my home big enough? What are the kids going to do? All things that have crossed my mind. So if I am feeling inadequate, where do I even start?
Hospitality is MUCH more than having a pintrest fabulous home with gingham table cloths, chargers for plates, a perfectly set table with a beautiful bunch of sunflowers in the middle of the table. It is about being the hands and feet of God. It is about welcoming others into your life and sharing friendship with others.
- Start collecting recipes…easy desserts, sides, main dishes (a great place to start is my recipe tab up at the top of this page). Open up some recipe books you have laying around, pick up a Taste of Home magazine next time you are out and about, or look on Pintrest. There are so many easy ways to find affordable and delicious meals.
- Make a list of people who you might want to invite over. What would they like? What kind of food would they like? Do they have children, and if so, what kind of food would their kids like? Try to think outside the box…we all have friends and family that come over…what about families from church, families from the sports team (one of our favorite memories has been being invited over to a families home after an early morning football game…we didn’t know them well…awkward, a little but we are friends now!). Think outside the box. It’s one thing to get to know people at work, it takes a friendship to an entirely different level when they are sitting in your living room.
- Start simple…that might mean inviting someone over to lunch. It might mean cookies and coffee. Start off simple.
- Think about different needs…do they have kids? What are the ages and what types of things do the kids like? Pets? Food allergies?
- Keep it simple…I love flowers, I love a nice set table, but I also serve Thanksgiving dinner on paper plates. Ha! Not a joke. Think simple.
- Think about your guests needs…do they need a fun night of games and a belly full of pizza to keep their minds off stress? Do they need a heart-to-heart talk? Maybe they just need a warm meal and a place to lay their heads for the night? Ice cream and reality TV? Whatever their need, think about a way you can serve them.
- Pray…this one is BIG for me. Pray for connections over perfection. Pray that you can meet people right where they need to be met. Pray for connections of friendship and that you can love them like Jesus would. Pray that whoever enters your home can see Jesus through you and your family.
Hospitality is not self-serving. Hospitality, if done right is all about connections over perfection. Can people see God through a perfectly placed center piece? Yes! But they can also see God through connection and conversation. I challenge you to invite someone into your home this month. Hospitality is not about elaborate homes or meals. Hospitality is about sharing real life with real people. It’s about connecting with your community. It’s about creating relationships with people and glorifying God. It’s welcoming all and loving everyone. So, who are you inviting over for supper this month?
You can also see my first post on Welcoming All…Hospitality Today.