Keep on loving each other as brothers and sisters. Don’t forget
to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!
- Hebrews 13:1-2
When you think of hospitality what comes to mind? For me, there are two specific situations that stay at the top of my list.
My husband and I were once gifted a stay at a luxury resort. We had never experienced anything like it before. From the moment we walked in until the moment we walked out they made us feel so important, like royalty. The hospitality and kindness we received during our stay was extraordinary and we’ll never forget it.
The other example that comes to mind when I think of extraordinary hospitality are the handful of fierce and genuine females in my life that welcome people into their homes, churches, or communities in the most exquisite ways. They are generous in every facet of their lives. When you are in their presence you feel seen and loved. You are safe, heard, and cared for. You instantly become family whether friend or stranger. In their presence you know you’re valued as a human and never feel like a burden. And somehow, the most scrumptious snacks and food always seem to be readily available when they are near.
Have you ever experienced either of these scenarios? If you have, you understand what a gift it is to receive the priceless gift of hospitality.
When I look at what the Bible says about hospitality, I’m able to understand which example comes from being blessed with this spiritual gift.
They are generous in their giving.
In Greek, “hospitality” comes from the word philoxenos which translates to “loving strangers” (Strong’s Greek Concordance). God has uniquely created some of us with this spiritual gift of loving strangers. But, for some of us, loving strangers - hospitality - it doesn’t come easy. We struggle with being generous in our love towards strangers. And that’s okay. God didn't create us with that spiritual gift. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t learn a few good habits from those that are gifted in hospitality. And the Bible says we should show hospitality to one another without grumbling (1 Peter 4:9 ESV).
So, in this miracle of a season, let’s pause to thank God for our spiritual gifts, but also stretch ourselves beyond our giftings to loving one another and loving strangers the way Jesus did.
1. What has been your experience when you were in the presence of someone whose spiritual gift is hospitality?
2. Whether or not your spiritual gift is hospitality, what are 3 habits you can begin to implement when serving others to help them feel warmly welcomed and loved?
Father God, thank You for creating each of us with unique spiritual gifts. For those of us that weren’t created with the gifting of hospitality, please help us to recognize, receive, appreciate, and express our gratitude to those that were. Help us to learn from them and remember to love not just our friends and family well, but also the strangers that we come in contact with daily. Thank You for the miracle of baby Jesus and the opportunity to share You with others, Amen.
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