The Lost Art of Hospitality
We all have a general idea of what it means to show hospitality. Merriam-Webster describes hospitality as the “generous and friendly treatment of visitors and guests.” And there are many Scriptures that teach the importance of it, like Romans 12:13 “Share with the saints in their need; pursue hospitality.” But with the demands of family, work, and numerous other commitments, how can we take time in our busy schedules to practice it?
We can all think of people who possess the “gift of hospitality.” It just seems to come easy to them. They love cooking and having people over for meals, and they have a beautifully decorated house to entertain in. But these aren’t the most important aspects of hospitality, actually. It all starts with love - serving in love. Here are some thoughtful and simple ways you can reach out and show hospitality to those around you:
If you enjoy baking, bake extra treats for neighbors and friends – cookies, a cake, a pie, a loaf of banana bread – those who are stretched for time will appreciate your homemade goodies so much! Nobody can turn down fresh baked goodies, and you can even start a recipe journal for your recipient, or deliver the goodies with a thoughtful tableware gift as a bonus.
Treat someone going through a challenging time to dinner - in your home or at their favorite restaurant. Or invite someone who could use a break to a nearby coffee shop and spend some time catching up!
Open your home as a meeting place for a Bible Study or small group (read our Small Group Start-Up Guide here). Inviting a small group into your home is a great way to get to know others in your church and your neighbors. Refreshments can be simple - coffee, tea, soda, and a simple snack like cheese and crackers, or cookies.
Is someone you know under the weather? Or do you have an elderly neighbor that can’t get out much? Take a meal or snack to them and offer to pick up any items from the store they might need. While you’re at it, think of getting them an encouraging gift.
If gardening is your thing, share your bounty with those around you - everyone loves fresh-grown veggies and flowers and it’s a great way to connect with your neighbors. Not a gardener? No worries - you can still send a beautiful bouquet of fresh flowers and add a thoughtful note or little gift along with it!
You may not have the time or budget to host a large meal, but how about hosting a potluck and providing the main dish? If it’s a large gathering and the weather is nice, have a potluck picnic at the park or in your backyard.
Do something out of the ordinary for the women in your church or neighborhood - host a tea party, complete with scones, small sandwiches, and tea cookies or cakes. Make several pots of tea - include an herbal tea and flavored tea for variety, and have a tea tasting party! Check out DaySpring's inspirational mugs & drinkware for serving!
As you open your heart and home to others, remember to also share and show God’s love to them. Hospitality is a ministry of serving - it’s a way God can use you to reach out and bless those around you!
Don’t neglect to do what is good and to share, for God is pleased with such sacrifices. HEBREWS 13:16 (CSB)
Looking for more ideas on how to open your heart and home this season? Check out our entire selection of hospitality articles and be sure to browse through our hospitality gifts including inspirational décor, serving dishes and wall art.