Hospitality – The Missing Ingredient

“While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him.” – Mark 2:15

Why is it that Jesus spent time with tax collectors and sinners, but the majority of believers don’t have friends outside of their church? If Jesus modeled the way, and we endeavor to be like Jesus, isn’t it time to rethink a few things?

When Janet was growing up, there was a new face at dinner almost every night.

This was such a common practice in her house that the meals with only her parents stand out in her mind.

As a teenager, this habit embarrassed Janet. “My mom was the type of person who could strike up a conversation with the person in line behind her at the grocery store and two minutes later; they would be chatting like they’d been friends for years!”

She asked her mom once about the strangers at the table. “Mom told me that’s what Jesus did. That He was always inviting others to break bread with Him, so she figured that welcoming people to share a meal was the Gospel thing to do.”

When Janet heard that her mother had a heart attack, she rushed to her bedside.

The doctor said it was a minor heart attack and that she’d make a full recovery. But they received dozens and dozens of casseroles, gifts, and various types of help during that time. She never realized her mom’s impact until she saw how many people were eager to help her.

Janet’s mom got it right! She not only read the Bible, but she also lived it out. She didn’t have to take a class on what to say or how to convert a non-believer over dinner. She merely showed them kindness and let the Holy Spirit guide the conversation, and in doing so, she made a difference and continues to live this out to this day.

My prayer for the body of Christ is that we would prioritize hospitality and simple acts of kindness. May we be intentional about this! May this be a part of who we are and as we live this out, may it be contagious to those around us.

In doing so, we will be sowing seeds of God’s love and I’m willing to bet…leaving behind an incredible legacy.