Day 2 :: Why Hospitality?

Spring Wreath

I
t takes time, energy, and resources.  It can be inconvenient, messy, and awkward. It would be easier to just meet somewhere else for a meal, to go out by yourself, or to not make plans at all.  It would be easier to have friends stay at a hotel instead of on your couch.

So why do it?  Why invite people into your home and share your food, your space, your life?

Real Relationships

In my experience, time spent in each others’ homes fosters authentic relationships.  You see more layers of a person when you spend time in their home.  You see someone’s bookshelf and find that they also love A Severe Mercy.  You learn that other people’s kids throw food at dinner, too.

And there’s a level of comfort and openness that can come just by being in a home versus a public space.

Beyond all of this, the stage of life I’m currently in (mom to a toddler and a preschooler) simply lends itself to making friends at someone’s kitchen table or in their backyard.

Gone are the days of going out with other couples multiple times a week.  Nowadays, friendships are forged over cups of coffee and bouncing babies and in between melt-downs and nap-times.  And all of this is more easily done in someone’s home.

Sharpie Repair

You Get Over Stuff

Having people in my home on a regular basis forces me to decide which is more important—keeping my stuff in perfect condition or having a house full of friends.  So far, I’m choosing a full house.

The carpet will wear, the chairs will need repair, and someone will spill something somewhere.  But things are made to be used and shared.

It Relieves the Pressure to Impress

The more I invite folks over, the more I realize how cute or big or well decorated my home is doesn’t matter as much as I might have thought.  Especially when people come over in the midst of imperfection and still seem to have a good time.

I love pretty spaces as much (or more than) the next person, but beauty isn’t all that fills people’s souls.  People want to be loved, listened to, and cared for in practical ways.  Which is basically hospitality.

It Fills Your Home with Warmth and Life

I am never happier than when my house is full of friends.  I love the sharing of stories and hearts over meals.  I love playing games and discovering people’s funny quirks.

I love the joy that comes with taking care of others.  I love when other people hold my baby so I can eat.

Yes, it takes effort, time, and resources. But investing in people’s lives via hospitality is totally worth it.

This is a post from a 31-day series on Real, Simple Hospitality.  Read all the other posts here.  Check out all the other 31 Day-ers here.

This entry was posted in Haven, Intentional Living on by .

About Jenn

Jenn is a mommy of three and wife to her best friend. She enjoys good books, having dinner guests, and elevenses. She is not afraid to lead a one woman crusade against the rampant misuse of the apostrophe. She is afraid to adopt kittens before the baby turns three.

  • Can I just say again that I’m so glad you’re doing this series? =) All of the above are reasons I have to get over before I have people over…and once they do come over, I realize that they don’t care if the laundry is caught up or not. It’s not, btw. But I have a soft couch, A Severe Mercy on the bookshelf and coffee beans in the cupboard, and a baby who throws food. 😉

    • Nope, they don’t care about the laundry. At least I don’t. 🙂 So I tell myself other people don’t.

  • I love this…it’s so true. It’s always easier to host here nowadays. I’ve had friends without kids ask to do lunch or coffee and I always invite them over here instead. (my kid, in a coffee shop? yeah right) Not sure they are always prepared for the craziness they will find, but I just tell myself I am giving them a realistic picture of what it’s like. Off to look up a Severe Mercy now 🙂

    • Yes! You are just doing them the favor of a real-life look at raising kids :). A Severe Mercy is one of my all-time favs. I hope you like it!

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