hospitality – what is it good for?

do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it. hebrews 13:2

lunch @ deangelosover the past four to five months my wife, pam, and i have really been dealing with the biblical concept of hospitality. truthfully hospitality is a concept that i find frustrating. it frustrates me because i don’t understand it. it is completely foreign to what i have been told in this world. hospitality is much more than just “having people over.” hospitality focuses on the “alien” or “stranger”. it means bringing those who are on the “margins of society” into your lives. it is not just meeting the needs of food, clothing, or lodging, though that is definitely a part of it. hospitality involves bringing those who are on the margins actually into your lives and homes.

in my opinion hospitality is simply not practiced very well within western CHRISTianity. if nothing else i know that i don’t practice it very well. yet it is of incredible importance in both the old and new testaments. this means that the follower of CHRIST, which i am trying to be, needs to practice it. this is not something that is easy for me to practice. i would rather give money to help, or go to the place of need and serve. bringing the “alien and stranger” into my house is something else entirely.

pam and i have been taking small steps. we had a homeless friend over awhile back for supper with our kids and us. it was a wonderful experience. the next step for us is to “adopt” two l.s.u. students who are from india. according to the university these guys have been in the states for two years and are still desperate to know someone. we’ve made the contact and started the process of getting them over to our houses regularly. the next step is actually getting them into our homes. we’re not doing this as some form of evangelism to india (though if they come to know CHRIST i would be please as punch). we are not trying nor will we attempt to prostelize them. this is merely an attempt to bring some guys who are on the margins of american society into our homes and practice hospitality.

i don’t really know what i’m doing but i do know that i really want to understand what GOD means by “do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers” and i guess this is the start of understanding that.

One Reply to “hospitality – what is it good for?”

  1. Hi Robert. Thanks for your comment on my blog post about Watership Down. Great to have you drop by. The essay is not on line, but if you’d like to e-mail me with a postal address, I photocopy it and post it over…
    Grace and peace be with you and yours.

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