Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Invitation to Christ’s Hospitality
Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it (V.2)
The words hospitality and hospital were derived from the Latin word hospes, signifying a stranger or foreigner, hence a guest. Hospitality is the relationship between the guest and the host, or the act or practice of being hospitable. Various ancient cultures placed special emphasis in this regard. To the ancient greeks, hospitality was a divine right. In India hospitality is based on the on the principle Atithi Devo Bhava, meaning “the guest is God”. We see a similar instance in Old Testament where Abraham was treating few strangers without knowing that they were angels(V.2) .Christianity cannot be thought of without the aspect of hospitality, such a bond exists between the two. Jesus’ parables were rich with the characteristics of hospitality like Good Samaritan and his life was filled with compassion that he knew exactly the mind of a hospitable house owner at the wedding feast at Cana and another one who allowed to open the roof of his house to bring the paralyzed man.
Hospitality is an expression of one’s character: As a marthomite, one can be proud of the rich heritage and tradition that we inherited from such great church leaders like late Juhanon Marthoma and other metropolitans, Bishops, Priests, Evangelists and lay leaders who demonstrated the true meaning of hospitality through their lives that paved the seed for the growth of the church. Let’s constantly reminds us that we are the descendants of the people of great faith and sacrifice. I have heard of humbling stories of the hospitality our forefathers had extended to the servants of God to the extent of starving their own families in those days when two meals a day was considered a luxury. God remembered their sacrificial giving and I am certain that each of us here in US is a living testimony of the blessings in return. The challenge is whether our children inherit such blessings moving forward. Have we ever thought of this? Do we regret the decisions we made for our children’s upbringing? Are our tears today is of gratitude or regret? Take a moment to reflect on our own lives.
Hospitality is a symbol of discipleship: Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and also become the host to the travelers to Emmaus even after resurrection thus have demonstrated the need of serving others. True disciple offers his/her life like a fragrant offering for the world around. As true disciples, let’s mold our lives to receive the great invitation from the King who will say “Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
Prayer: O Lord, help me to follow the footsteps of the saints who chose to suffer for your sake to transform the world. Amen.
Thought for the day: Hospitality should have no other nature than love – Henrietta Mears
George Sam, Viginia Immanuel MTC