Recapturing the Call to
Families have all
but given up the
command to be
hospitable and have
instead labeled it a gift
or a calling reserved
for a few.
“You have the gift of hos- pitality!” I often hear women complimenting my wife with those words
when we host large gatherings, friends,
struggling families, and traveling families or invite an occasional work associate
of mine to join us for dinner. You would
think this would bring us joy, but in fact
it saddens us. Families have all but given
up the command to be hospitable and
have instead labeled it a gift or a calling
reserved for a few.
When I hear “You have the gift of
hospitality,” I know they mean well, but
in my heart, I realize they have cheated
not only themselves but also their entire
family out of an important blessing. Re-
capturing the call to practice hospitality
just might be the ingredient your family
is missing, one that will knit your family
together in a very special way.
In our culture, when we speak of hospitality, we generally think of entertaining.
But what is hospitality really?
Hospitality is a word derived from two Latin
roots, hospes and pets. The first refers to a
stranger or even someone who is hostile.
The second refers to a means of gaining
power. These words describe an ancient
Greek story of two men who were enemies. One of them offers this hospitality,