Hospitality and a Dirty House

clean house hospitalityDid you know that you do not need to have a clean house to practice hospitality? Besides, isn’t “clean house” an oxymoron? I thought dust was nothing more than a protective coating for your furniture!

When I was single, one of my best friends was a married man. Every time we talked about going to his house, or having some people come to his house, there was always a concern regarding the cleanliness of his house. They did a great job with decorating and practicing hospitality.

As a bachelor hanging out with other bachelors, this was never a big deal. Our apartment was a mess and we had people over all the time!

I know realize that I did not know true cleanliness. In fact, when we were dating, Janet surprised me by giving my bedroom a complete cleaning overhaul! Wow! I was impressed! I still don’t know what was in all of those garbage bags.

All throughout the New Testament, we are instructed to be hospitable. Romans 12:13 and 1 Peter 1:9 call all Christians to it. Other passages, namely 1 Timothy 3:2 and Titus 1:8, include it on a list of qualifications for leadership. While some have a welcoming gift of hospitality, we should all attempt it.

Hospitality means that we share our homes – and lives – with others. Here’s some ideas to help you practice better hospitality.

  1. Cleanliness is overrated. Please don’t misunderstand me. We don’t live in a pig stye, and neither should you. There’s nothing wrong with picking up the clutter. But you don’t have to have it immaculate before you invite people over.
  2. Keep it simple. The focus should not be on making an eight course meal when you invite someone over. Perhaps a casserole is all that is necessary. Hospitality is about people, not just food. Just hang out together. Be in relationship with other believers.
  3. Intentional Conversation. When you get together, be sure to talk about the things of the Lord. Ask folks how they came to know Jesus. Share your testimonies together. This is disciple-making!

Christianity is not supposed to be just going to an event on Sunday morning. We do life with people throughout the week. Much of that is driven by hospitality.