Thursday, June 26, 2008

Well Duh...Just Duh

I have been reading Karen Ehman's A Life That Says Welcome. In it, she talks about practicing hospitality and the fact that we are all called to practice hospitality (Romans 12:13 NIV). Karen points out that practice involves, well, practice. This sentence jumped out and smacked me over the forehead.

We don't learn by watching, we learn by doing. Anything we learn to do, play an instrument, read, play a sport...we get better as we do it. I thought (subconsciously, of course) that since I had watched my mother sort laundry every Friday night and bake pies and prepare meals that I should be able to do this too. Of course, my mother taught me how to sort laundry and I am a pretty good cook (although I don't do pie crust). But the whole keeping house and opening my home with a heart of hospitality? I wasn't really *taught* that. We did a speed clean when we knew company was coming and just apologized for the mess when we didn't know company was coming. Our home was always open with a glass of cold iced tea or a cup of hot coffee but it never seemed very intentional. I'm usually the type to be able to see a picture and recreate something so I guess I've been assuming that because I've *seen* hospitality and a clean house done that I could do it too. Don't get me wrong, I know how to clean house and how to be hospitable. It just doesn't come easily or naturally to me.

Father God, help me start today by practicing hospitality within my own family. Work through me to make them feel welcome and loved. Help me to not save the best cookies or the best tablecloth or even the best meals for company. Remind me of this lesson over and over again until it becomes second nature to me. Remind me that practice makes things easier and more natural over time. May my work be pleasing to you and bring glory and honor to you alone. Amen.

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