Celebrating Biblical Hospitality

This week my husband and I have been the grateful recipients of hospitality. Truth be told, we’d much rather be the ones extending hospitality. In our self-sufficient society, it’s much more comfortable to be the gracious givers than humble receivers. 

But every now and then, we all need help. Such was the case this week when we vacated our house to extend hospitality to a special family who needed our home more than we did. In advance of their arrival, we tossed around a few ideas about where to stay. The back porch was unairconditioned. The tent leaks. Extended Stay America was pricey. So was Airbnb. 

Then a friend offered to let us stay in the room over their garage. “It has its own bathroom,” she said, “and it’s right off the kitchen. You are more than welcome. We’d love to have you.” 

So we accepted. Gratefully. 

For almost a week they shared their kitchen, their hot water, their laundry room, and, glory be, their air conditioning. We exchanged greetings as we headed out to work in the mornings and shared meals in the evenings where we recapped our days. 

Best of all, we got to know each other better, prayed together, and laughed. Although we’ve been friends for decades, our time in their home knitted our hearts together and gave us greater insight into how to love and support each other. 

Instead of being stressful and difficult, our time away from our home was restful and relaxing. Our host and hostess sweetly demonstrated what 1 Peter 4:9-10 instructs: 

“Be hospitable to one another without grumbling. As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God” (1 Peter 4:9-10). 

If you have the opportunity to extend hospitality, whether it’s inviting a church visitor home for dinner after the service, having neighbors over for burgers and games, or allowing a college student to live in your spare bedroom between semesters, I encourage you to do it. 

God will use your kindness and generosity in ways you can never imagine. In the marvelous, mysterious economy of God, everything you’ve given in Jesus’ name will find its way back to you, shaken, pressed down, and running over, either in this life or in the life to come. 

“A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed” (Proverbs 11:25). 

Now it’s your turn. When have you extended hospitality in Jesus’ name and been refreshed by doing so? Share your experience in a comment below. If you’re reading by email, CLICK HERE to visit Hungry for God online and share. 

And if you'd like to read more about how practicing hospitality can advance God's kingdom, I invite you to check out Brandon Clements' book, The Simplest Way to Change the Word -- Biblical Hospitality as a Way of Life.

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1 comment:

  1. Sweet girl, "we vacated our house to extend hospitality to a special family who needed our home more than we did" IS hospitality. In fact, I dare say that the All-Things Southern Dictionary (if there's not one, there should be) has a new definition for hospitality. I like to think I've extended biblical hospitality for many year and in many ways. I've never given up my own home to be hospitable. Sounds to me you were "Doubly-Blessed". God blessed you by giving you an affordable, air conditioned place to stay and He blessed you a deeper friendship. I learned a new phrase in China many years ago; being "Double Happy." Marriages, blessing others while being blessed yourselves... that's double happy ma'am.


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