“…………….Pursue the practice of hospitality”. Romans 12:13 Amplified
Today we were privileged to share a meal around a table with friends we hadn’t met. That may sound a little silly, but let me explain.
In the last few months my husband and I have been regularly attending a church after a very long break. It’s actually a miracle that we are there at all as our past experiences haven’t been all that wonderful.
So, what has been the difference this time ?
From the moment we began attending we were welcomed, loved and accepted. No questions asked. We were quite broken and carrying a sizeable amount of ” Church Baggage “, skeptical and happy to be uninvolved . Not a week has gone by where someone hasn’t talked to us and made us feel a part of the family. There is no “Special Team ” of people designated to make new comers feel welcomed. Everyone just does, it’s genuine and heartfelt. You can tell the difference you know !
A couple of weeks ago we were given an invitation to ” Come Home For Christmas “. Host families invite others to attend lunch in their homes, everyone gets an invite and visitors on the day are also extended a welcome to a gathering.
We arrived to enjoy a meal with people we didn’t really know, and left having made new friends.
So many times in Jesus life He shared meals with people, He took the time to form relationship in the atmosphere of hospitality, He performed miracles multiplying food in the atmosphere of hospitality, He ate in people’s homes and ministered in the atmosphere of hospitality, The Last Supper, gathered with the disciples He administered the first Communion in an atmosphere of hospitality.
In an age where the simple act of sitting down to a family meal is becoming increasingly difficult the importance of fellowship in an atmosphere of hospitality cannot be underestimated.
When we gather around a table to share a meal we are welcoming those who partake ” into our home”. When people walk through the door of our church, without exception their experience should be ” WELCOME HOME ”
” Love one another with brotherly affection ( as members of one family), giving precedence and showing honour to one another. Rom 10:12 Amplified
A family is made up of different personalities, some family members are more colourful than others, some do things that disappoint us, but they are still accepted, still part of the family. Jesus broke bread with tax collectors, prostitutes and those that many would have considered undesirable, but He sought them out, He supped and fellowshipped with them.
He is our example, let us as a people and our Church as a family be those who say ” WELCOME HOME ”
Practice hospitality to one another ( those of the household of faith).
( Be hospitable , be a lover of strangers, with brotherly affection for the unknown guests, the foreigners, the poor, and all others who come your way who are of Christ’s body.) And ( in each instance) do it ungrudgingly ( cordially and graciously , without complaining but as representing Him).
1Peter 4:9 Amplified bible
Thank you to our new Church Family for Welcoming us Home. Northlakes Salvos. http://www.northlakessalvos.com.au