Discussing
Hospitality vs. Entertaining

Jerod Clark

Amy
January 26, 2009

Great post. I've always believed that sometimes that our "hospitality" isn't quite what God has in mind. Many times, what we call hospitality is really entertaining to impress our friends and family which isn't much different from the world's idea of hospitality. I think hospitality is ministering to those outside our immediate circle, giving unselfishly, providing a place to stay or a free meal without any expectation of thank yous, kudos or applause.

Tabitha
January 26, 2009

Just ran across this site through a blogging community I joined, and wanted to say thanks for this post! I don't get many opportunities to be hospitable in terms of opening up my home, because I'm renting/sharing with other people. But I like the thought that I can be hospitable just by making mySELF available (not necessarily my home) to people, and by simply loving those around me as Christ would love them.<br><br>Thanks again!<br><br>-Tabitha

Saved Girl
January 27, 2009

LOVE. LOVE YOUR BLOG. I just created a blog devoted to praising God so I was perusing like-minded blogs and was glad to find you!

Laura
January 27, 2009

I can totally relate to this. Oftentimes I won't have people over to our house, probably because I'm too focused on entertaining vs. showing hospitality. To me, entertaining means i need to have the house perfectly clean, make the right food that my guests will enjoy, and have the kids behaving themselves so I can properly enjoy the night with my guests. Because our house is not always the cleanest, and my dinner doesn't always taste the greatest, entertaining creates so much pressure that I put it off and say, "Maybe next month..." Instead of being so worried about the "Martha" issues, I need to focus more on the "Mary" things. In the Bible, Jesus tells the story of Martha doing all the work of entertaning -- cleaning, cooking, etc..while Mary just sat at his feet and listened to him. Jesus said that Mary had chosen the better thing.<br><br>When I sit near my friend on the couch and ask about how life is really going or play a game with her kids, I know that God is so much more pleased with me than if I had created the perfect entertaining environment. If my friend or new acquaintance feels loved and cared for in my home, then the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are enough.

Lisa DeClue
January 29, 2009

Jerod, so often Christ followers are caught up in the 'Martha get-things-done' mentality r/t the 'Mary listen-to-the-Lord' calmness. I've been guilty of this in the past, but I have a new take the last few months.<br><br>Due to the pain of a broken back and coming off of a pain patch, my perspective has focused more on my cottage cheese ceiling than doing housework and all the other details of homekeeping. Actually, this is a useful time of reflection for me. The Lord has led me to an improved spiritual life and - as He always does - He's turning a really yukky time into a beautiful reflection of His glory. Praise God!

John
January 30, 2009

One of the points I stress as I train the group life leaders in our church is about the difference between hospitality and entertaining. I sum it up this way: it all has to do with where your focus is. Entertaining puts the focus on you. Your attention is on the environment, the food, the logistics. Hospitality puts the focus on your guest. They are the primary focus on your attention. Their needs come first, being in their presence is primary. We North Americans have subtly substituted entertaining for true hospitality. Unfortunately, that has filtered it's way into church culture and ends up being an obstacle to the community that God would have us experience.

John
February 5, 2009

What happened to prayer anyway? I say this because as mentioned we are to busy trying to impress, by the cleaning and making sure everything is just so. Like in some of the churches I have been in where the committee is trying to gather people so they can make up the rules as to who needs the prayers or what type of prayers they will need. With all of the committees and rules, the prayer gets lost in the turmoil of the preperations to give the prayer. If you get wrapped around the wheel, the wheel is all you see. Relax, ask God to guide you through what is needed. He will jump at the chance to give us his love and understanding. In God's Grace John

Andrew
February 6, 2009

I've never thought of praying for our guests particularly for their needs.<br>It is really worth it to ask God what you might need to do for your guests. Not to make a name whilst it is not actually from deep down of our hearts.<br>This can work perfectly if we are living in fellowship with the Lord. God will enable us and hospitality to the souls (ministry) of our guests will take precedence to what we can show.<br>I've learn t a new thing from this article.<br>Keep on ministering!!! '.....Patriarchs ministered to angels without knowing it as they could come in men's appearance...'<br><a href="http://acceptedagain.bogspot.com" rel="nofollow">acceptedagain.bogspot.com</a>

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