“If you’d like to come see us, stop by any time. If you’d like to see our house, please make an appointment.” -Anonymous
I value sincerity. Genuineness. Authenticity. As an introvert, I have a pretty good sense of when someone isn’t quite being real. Masks bother me. I would rather someone show me their true personality, dirt and all, than to pretty it up with a facade that will crumble the longer they try to hold it in place.
We all have those masks though. Walls are easier to build than relationships. (Guilty! Another lovely introvert trait!) Hospitality is hard! It is hard to invite people into your home… your sanctuary, your place of peace and “self,” isn’t it? We feel like we have to have everything Pinterest-worthy before we can be hospitable.
As a homeschooling family, I unapologetically put my kidlet’s education before the house. I am only one person, with a limited number of hours during the day. I choose to put the kids first, and yes, sometimes the house suffers. Now, this doesn’t mean I completely neglect housekeeping. The kids have their own assigned chores they are responsible for… it just means I don’t go crazy about having a spotless home while the kids are school-age and we’re busy spending quality, precious, educational time. I’ll have a Pinterest-worthy home once they’re graduated and grown.
1 Peter 4:9 “Be hospitable to one another without grumbling or complaining.” (gulp… really?) 😉
Guess what? Your home doesn’t need to be picture-perfect in order to invite people over. Your furniture doesn’t have to match, the food doesn’t have to come with a theme. You don’t need to get out the good china, and most people will graciously ignore any carpet stains. Your home does not need to be worthy of being featured in Better Homes and Gardens. What matters is whether your heart in the right place. Are you willing? You may see the “imperfections” of your home, but as one who graciously opens it to others, it is perfect in a vastly more consequential way.
Be more concerned with connections with others, instead of what material things you have or don’t have. Most people hunger for those meaningful connections even more than they yearn for a decadent meal. We truly share life together when we are genuine, warts and all, rather than waiting until that (neverending) to-do list is complete. Real authenticity happens after you take the first step. Hospitality is not about a home inspection, but about nurturing genuine friendships that shine, even if your kitchen floors may not.
How do you facilitate hospitality in your home? Share some helpful hints with us in the comment section below! We’d love to hear your ideas!
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