We tend, former procrastinators, to create our own obstacles to hosting people in our homes. We see difficulties the Lord doesn’t see and other people, frankly, would not care about.
But we care, so we procrastinate or simply refuse to open our homes to others. What are some reasons? How can we disarm them?
- “I need to be fancy.” Nope. Invite folks for a casual time together and keep it that way. Folks appreciate it.
- “Our house/couch/etc. is not nice enough.” Please read the story of my friend here. The Lord ministered to ladies using exactly what she lacked.
- “I don’t want to risk damage to certain things.” Remove them from harm’s way. Ask the Lord for His perspective.
- “My house is too messy.” Likely, people are fine with your mess. But consider, have you formed a habit that keeps you from people and negatively affects your own family? I prefer picked up and clean; but if I can’t have both, I choose picked up. (More next week.)
- “I’m an introvert.” The Lord will help you stretch. Set limits on your invitation. “We’ll make it an early evening and stop by eight.”
- “I don’t know what to talk about.” Ask a friend or online for get-to-know -you questions. Turn the spotlight on others. Show interest.
- “It’s overwhelming.” Host a potluck or just invite for dessert. Use paper goods.
- “It’s hard with children.” Children remove pretense; that’s an asset. We had a general for dinner. One of our children touched his arm so he leaned down to listen. Our cherub looked up and BURPED LOUDLY right in his face! He turned to me, his face contorted. “I know I shouldn’t, but I can’t help it!” And he burst out laughing!
- “We have a special needs person in our family that makes things awkward.” This child of God is part of your life. Sharing time with him or her could be life-affecting for your guests as they see you serve.
- “I’m afraid I can’t do what they need.” Someone answered us, “I’d love to have dinner with you. I’m on a restricted diet. I’ll come to your house if you’ll allow me to bring my own food.” We were tension-free and had a great time. Ask if your guest’s needs would be best met if they brought their own provisions. Meet for a picnic if they can’t navigate your steps.
- “They’ll judge me.” The issue is not “their” opinion. It’s what Bill Fawcett taught me: Did you please your Heavenly Father?
God wants us to share our homes as a way of ministering to others and growing us. He provides. We can rest easy that what we have and what we are able to do by His grace is what He intends us to share. We need not fret over not having “the right stuff.” We already do, within and around us.
What objection to hosting can you turn over to God?