"The beauty of the house is order, the
blessing of the house is contentment,
The glory of the house is hospitality."
This morning, I was very aware of my house... my home. Let me explain.
I was having a friend over this morning (with her two young daughters) for coffee, to have a chance for our kids to get together and for us to just "catch up"- all before we make our move. I"ll admit, I was feeling quite frantic, in effort to "clean up, a bit more".
She just left my house not too long ago. And we had a wonderful, wonderful visit. I applaud her for packing up her little ones Just "to get out of the house"... in effort to visit with other ladies, etc. We had a great conversation and it actually touched on the topic of hospitality.
Her home and mine are in the complete opposite side of the spectrum as it pertains to "style". And the refreshing thing is that her appreciation for my Shabby Chic/vintage/antique/rustic appeal is totally genuine, and I can say that about me towards her more modern country/contemporary flair. She loves to brag on my ability to decorate and yet I can be a bit envious that her home always seems SO CLEAN, so in place, so formal (She doesn't agree with me on this assessment -I suppose beauty is all in the eye of the beholder).
Obviously today, I felt nervous, even more, because my home is total upheaval with boxes getting packed and stacked.
And, I had to stop myself and think about; What is true humility in the midst of hospitality look like? Well, this is it. My dear, sweet friend is coming over - this is the way it is, right now - and besides I need to take to heart this adage...
"My house may not be ready, but my heart is.
Come on in!"
But, I have a confession to make. My heart was not ready (this morning). It was a disaster - I was trying to do, and trying to make, and trying to be - more then I could handle for the hour and a half before she (and her girls) arrived.
I cannot believe how I let the "moment" of getting prepared affect my responses. My poor little ones. So, rather then making a good impression for my friend, I, most likely, left a bad impression on my kids.
I told her about my morning... and well, she said she could totally relate! We laughed. We all have our days. She didn't judge me one bit. And I decided that I actually didn't mind the dirty dishes waiting on the counter to get washed...
I ended up giving my friend a copy of a book, titled, "A life that says Welcome" that has become one of my greatest sources of encouragement in regards to hospitality. Actually there are many books that have, over the years, been very influential in my pursuit of hospitality and well, this one is my current favorite. This book by Karen Ehman is definitely one worth checking out, and I hope to write more on this subject in the near future. Stay tuned...
I just want to say I was so impressed with Caleb's "hospitality" in sharing his toys with the girls. We had talked about them coming, earlier, and he wasn't so sure that he could do that... yet, he did it and he did it very well. I give God praise for the gentle reminder... hospitality starts young. Hopefully it will grow up with us as we grow.