Hospitality is the prompt word for #FiveMinuteFriday this week. It is one of my favorite words. Just the sound of it is welcoming to me. It’s interesting that a simple definition of the word, according to Rhymezone is:
Definitions of hospitality:
- noun: kindness in welcoming guests or strangers
Isn’t it funny that we often go way past that definition and turn it into something of a big extravaganza?
But in it’s simplest form, hospitality is just showing kindness to someone by making them feel welcome.
My mother and grandmother knew how to make people feel welcome in their homes. And they passed that desire on to me, but my home doesn’t look like either of theirs. I would love to have a clean, neat house all the time, but that is just not possible. We do live in a log house in a rural area, and some people find that a welcome change.
Hospitality Focuses on People
Through the years I’ve learned that hospitality starts with an attitude that focuses on people not things.
My husband and I have always enjoyed having people over, but what that looks like has changed over the years.
When there were just two of us it was easy to clean house and cook to welcome company. As the children came along it got a little harder but still we managed to have people over a lot. It didn’t seem to matter if the house was a mess.
We had seven children and some good friends had eight. Even though we didn’t have extra large homes, we visited each other a lot. Our children varied in age from young to adult. They not only got along well together but helped looked after the younger ones so we parents could visit.
Hospitality Comes in Many Forms
To be hospitable doesn’t always mean having someone in your home.
We can show kindness by smiling at a stranger we pass on the street. Maybe someone new comes to church and you notice them standing alone. Your smile and words of welcome might be the start of a new friendship. Hospitality is about sharing our lives with others.
My five minutes are up, but there is so much more to be said about hospitality. That might have to come in a later blog post, where I have time to expand on the topic.
When you think about it, any act of kindness can make a person feel welcome, and isn’t that the whole point of hospitality?
A Collage of Welcome
I recently made a collage in my art journal. Today, as I was looking at it trying to figure out what words to add, I noticed the couch right in the middle. Thinking about the #FiveMinuteFriday prompt word, I could picture the word welcome right on that couch.
So I looked through magazines until I found all the letters. I even tried different styles and finally decided on what you see below.
How about you? What other ways can you think of to show hospitality? I’d love to see your ideas in the comments.
Hebrews 13:1-2 (NLT)
Keep on loving each other as brothers and sisters. Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!