One doesn’t need to turn on the news anymore to know that we are in tough times. Log on to Facebook, scroll the news feed on your cell phone, or attend a social function and you inevitably hear of the latest shooting, terrorist act, or issue of moral decay.
If you have ever felt desperate for hope amidst all of the dark news, then then you are in good company. As the times get darker, more and more people will feel desperate for hope. This is actually a good thing; I have been encouraged lately in remembering that difficult times and persecution often result in God moving in unprecedented ways.
Part I of this series explored the heart and purpose of hospitality. This month we will break down four practical things to consider if you desire to cultivate hospitality in your life, no matter where you live. Yes, you too can be the hostess who is able to sit back and enjoy her company, no matter what else is going wrong!
What if one of your neighbors randomly put a bright, lime green picnic table in their front yard that stuck out like a sore thumb? Would you notice? Of course!
Rosaria Butterfield, author of The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert, did just that on her family’s front yard in North Carolina. You see, the green table is known as the local meeting point for prayer. Once every week, anyone is welcome to meet at the famous “green table” for a neighborhood prayer walk. The group goes through the neighborhood and prays for local needs, as well as for any requests that strangers, or “non-praying” people will share with the group as they walk.
Afterwards, they gather for a meal and people from the entire neighborhood mingle further. Rosaria says the size of the core group has fluctuated, but the simple act of prayer walking and sharing meals has enabled her family to use their home as a means for reaching out to her neighbors.
I use her story as an example because hospitality is something I’ve desired to cultivate in my own life, even though I’ve never had a place of my own.We’ll do a two-part series here that talks about how anyone can practice hospitality – even if you don’t have your own place!