Tuesday, August 24, 2010


While Christine and I vacationed in Savannah, we came upon an interesting house. Evidently, the gentleman who built the house did it in retaliation. It seems that he had donated land across the street to a society for direct decedents of the original settlers of Savannah who were with Oglethorpe. While the donor had a long family tenure in Savannah, he was not a descendent of a settler and he was not allowed to join the society when their building was finished. They hosted parties for their members but the donor was not allowed entry. He, in turn, built his house across the street and hosted (wild) parties that started an hour before the society events. The donor drew in the society crowds and left the society's galas noticeably void of party-goers.


People tell me that they left churches because they were not allowed "entry." Sure no one barred the door, but they were ignored. Tenured church friends used their Sunday time to catch up with each other but seldom to get to know a visitor. These visitors felt unwelcomed into the church "society." People were expected to leave their money, volunteer for the "bottom-feeder" ministries that no one wanted, and not ask to run anything.


Now, I know that not all churches or visits are like these. And some people are very persistent. But I know there are enough stories like this because I meet these people over and over again. New faces. Same story. The Church let them down. They had yearned for connection in a very disconnected world.


Hospitality is a hallmark of following Jesus. We entertain angels, even God when we invest in hospitality. Hospitality marks a church as Christ's. Each of us individually treats every stranger as if she was God. Life blooms.


May you introduce someone to Christ today by going out of your way as host. Do not underestimate the resurrecting power of your graciousness.

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