After studying the book of Luke, I came across some very familiar verses.
“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? Even “sinners” do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even “sinners” lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the most High, because he is kind and ungrateful to the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”- Luke 6:32-36.
So why did this passage become so meaningful all of a sudden? I had been lamenting the fact that our best “couple” friends had moved away. I would start to feel sorry for myself thinking no one else would be brave enough to invite a family of eight over for dinner.
The Lord challenged my thinking in the area of hospitality. I had become good at inviting friends over, sharing a meal and having sweet fellowship with like-minded Believers. But the hospitality was always reciprocated. I knew we would be invited to our friends’ house the next time we got together. Now there is nothing wrong with this, but I realized that I had been practicing “comfortable hospitality” exclusively. This is not God’s Will for our lives. . Yes, it is nice to be invited to into other people’s homes, but it was very freeing to release my expectations of being invited to other people’s homes. I found that I have been very content to have people in my home where I can relax because I am set up for a crowd. It is way easier on me!
Then God hit me with Luke 14:12, which says, “Then Jesus said, ‘When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or relatives, or rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.’”
We are literally to invite the poor and downtrodden into our homes. Since being convicted of this we have had an opportunity to invite one such couple into our home, along with some others that could in no way reciprocate.
Think back on the previous year. Have you fallen into the same trap I had. First, are you practicing hospitality as the Lord commanded? Second, are you only inviting people into your home that you have things in common with? Are they in the same financial position you are in? Can they “pay” you back?
I am really looking forward to teaching this concept to my children. It is so important that our children get the idea that it is “better to give than to receive”.
May the Lord bless you as you pray and ask God if you are showing favoritism in your hospitality. Now I challenge you to truly do something about it!
From One Mom to Another,