Overflowing Cups: The Blessings of Hospitality

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This week has been all about hospitality: giving and receiving it. Monday, we had a new mama over and I got to nuzzle that sweet three-month old. Wednesday, another mama and son were over helping my boys build a cardboard boat for the upcoming cardboard boat regatta (hello summer). Thursday, an old friend and her boys were in town and we stretched the food in the fridge so everyone could stay late and catch up. And Friday, a lovely friend from co-op had us over to romp around in her beautiful backyard, to show us her lovely garden, and to sit around the kitchen table and slurp watermelon with sticky toddler fingers and hungry teenagers alike. She wouldn’t let me go home until I took some lovely cut flowers from her garden. I added them to a few of the hydrangeas and mint growing in my own backyard and it’s a reminder of the beauty of all this life-giving community, of lives intertwined. The aroma of the mint is heavenly every time I pass by. That’s also the case with these sweet friendships. I know they must please our Savior, an aroma of His good gifts to us, given and received.

Speaking of hospitality, this year I read (listened actually to) The Gospel Comes with a Housekey by Rosaria Butterfield. I’d say in the last 10 years it’s probably the book that has challenged me most. The largess of Rosaria’s faith, expressed in the ordinary generosity of opening her home, is strangely foreign in this modern world. If you are looking for a deep summer read, that will challenge and refresh you, I commend it.

Here’s one more thing about hospitality.. You know the verse which says, “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more” (Mark 4:24). As I pour out into others, others pour into me. As I reach in faith to bless others, I am in turn blessed. It’s not an absolute. But it so often happens that when we are following in faith, seeking to extend the kingdom blessings, God reaches back and blesses us, like this beautiful bouquet, like the chocolate croissants a friend brought over unexpectedly last Sunday, like that unexpected text that says, “I was thinking of you.” How can you measure out an overflowing cup of God’s love to someone else today?

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