Open your homes (show hospitality) to each other without complaining.” 1 Peter 4:9

Hospitality means the “friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers,” according to the Oxford Dictionary. Our culture’s definition of hospitality has become quite narrow. Most people are willing to show hospitality to family and close friends. However, even during the Christmas season, we have become increasingly unwilling to open our homes to those who are not in our established circle of relationships.

Our culture tells us that our home is our castle, our refuge, our stronghold. While our home should be a shelter and refuge, God wants us to offer our home as a shelter and refuge to others. We had the privilege for two summers to house and give hospitality to some college aged softball players. They came from a number of different states to play ball in a summer league hosted by our church. These young men had such a positive impact on our son, an only child, who was 9 and 10 during those summers. This can be a very crucial time in the life of a boy. These players became surrogate big brothers to him and amazing role models. It was such a blessing to show hospitality to these young men.

When was the last time you had someone in your home that you did not already have a relationship with? This season of Advent is a great time to open our homes to others and show hospitality. Who knows, you may be entertaining angels without realizing it. "Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!" (Hebrews 13:2 NLT).

Dear Father God, thank you for the home and other resources you have blessed me with. Help me to see all that you have given me as means of blessing others. I pray that during this Advent season I would find ways to be hospitable to others beyond my immediate circle of family and friends.  In Jesus name, Amen.

Written by Reenie Peppers

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