An important feature in our modest house is the guest room downstairs with two beds, and a bathroom with a shower stall nearby. My wife Pat and I are happy when we have company staying with us. We’re glad to help them feel comfortable. Over the years we, each of us separately or both together, have received many kind offers of hospitality from others. You may have experienced this as well.
Hospitality provides an experience of home and community while one is away from home, or even has no home. Through this human kindness, God’s loving kindness comes. We each have been given our daily bread, which Luther, in The Small Catechism, says includes home and property, to share with one another and those in need.
Though the Shunammite woman looks for no reward, Elisha reciprocates her kind hospitality. He effects through God’s power the birth of a son to her and her husband. Then, by transferring his life force into the son, Elisha revives him when he suddenly dies.
The guests we invite into our homes change us, bringing God’s active presence with them.
O God, in welcoming one another, may your life-giving power be among us. Amen. — TDW