Real Hospitality

WhatIsRealDevoMy dear friend, it is good that you help the brothers and sisters, even those you do not know. They told the church about your love. Please help them to continue their trip in a way worthy of God. They started out in service to Christ, and they have been accepting nothing from nonbelievers. So we should help such people; when we do, we share in their work for the truth. (3 John 1:5-8)

Ponder It.
When and how have you received hospitality?
When and how have you extended hospitality?
How have you struggled to extend or receive hospitality?

Receive It. Authentic hospitality is an attitude and an action. It happens inside our hearts, inside our homes, and beyond our walls. Hospitality is how we approach, nurture, and treat others. Hospitality is sharing what we have with others. We can become focused on what we’re physically sharing with others: we donate clothes, we share a meal, we give money. All those things are great, but motivation matters. If we set aside how we’re hospitable with our physical surroundings and material possessions and focus on our spiritual hospitality, our hospitality authenticity will grow.

Consider the fruit of the Spirit. But the Spirit produces the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. There is no law that says these things are wrong (Galatians 5:22-23). The fruit of the spirit grows from within us. God’s Spirit nourishes and produces these qualities in us as we yield to Him. We then share such qualities with others, because they impact everything we do. Authentic hospitality comes from the fruit of the Spirit, because as we share the Spirit’s fruit, we cannot help but to be hospitable in the way God intends. We share love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control with people around us: family, friends, acquaintances, neighbors, strangers.

Live It. Exercise hospitality with the fruit of the Spirit today. Write the fruit on an index card. Look for opportunities to share each quality today. Remind yourself of the list by glancing at it regularly. As you share hospitality, put a star next to the fruit shared. Ask God to continue to produce fruit within you and guide you to use it to be hospitable in ways that glorify Him.

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