Practicing Radical Hospitality
Our church recently celebrated “Tables for 8” with a few hundred people breaking bread together in homes in our community. My wife Lisa and I enjoyed a “house which runneth over” as we welcomed about 20-25 kids into our home between two dinners combined! What a joy!
The next “phase” of our Radical Hospitality is taking it from the church seats out into the streets. “Table of 8” was like a warm-up game for the real deal as our faith community longs to overflow with hospitality, community, and gospel conversations. As Rosaria Butterfield indicates, “The gospel comes with a house key.” For the early church, the home was a primary center of the expansion of the message and mission of Jesus.
Hospitality is Different than Entertaining
We must keep in mind that practicing radical hospitality is not the same as entertaining. Entertaining is about rolling out a perfect meal with a perfect table setting at a perfect house of sublime cleanliness. Entertaining points to the “self” -- either your culinary abilities or your cleanliness or your castle; in short, entertaining “makes much of you”.
Hospitality is different. Hospitality is about others. Hospitality listens to the guests; it is less about gourmet food or the state of your home and more about grace given, hurts shared, relationships strengthened, doubts heard, and common struggles faced together. Hospitality makes much of community.
As Jen Wilkin says, entertaining aims to impress while hospitality’s motive is to bless.
Will you take up the joyful task of overflowing with radical hospitality into our community?
“Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.” Romans 12:13
Thankful to serve a community that puts flesh on the gospel by practicing radical hospitality,
Pastor Jason Carter