Friday, June 18, 2010

Opening our home

I've enjoyed and been challenged by Offering Hospitality, and it's brought this subject more to the forefront of my mind. I realized that last week, without much fuss and fanfare, we hosted others four days in a row! I wanted to share about each of these occasions, with the hope that maybe it will inspire you to open your home.

Last Friday, our former pastor called to say he was in town for a few days. I invited him to join us that day for lunch even though I was going to be gone all morning with the kids. Our spread of sandwich fixings was nothing fancy; in fact, I was a little embarassed to be so casual. I did make a quick run to the store for grapes and chips to round out the meal, alongside carrot sticks and homemade cookies. Simple food, rich fellowship.

Saturday night, we hosted a couple families from church. This was actually a challenge our pastor gave in a sermon this spring, and something I want to be intentional about. This meal definitely took more preparation than Friday's lunch, although I chose an easy-peasy crockpot main dish to free up more time for the other dishes.

On Sunday, we invited a close friend over for dinner. It was a last minute invite, so I didn't alter our original menu, but he didn't seem to mind. =)

Finally, Monday evening, we hosted our third annual ice cream social for the neighbors on our block (11 of 14 households were represented). We always provide the tableware and location, a designated neighbor brings the ice cream, and everyone else brings a topping to share. We had a wonderful time visiting, and many people said how much fun they had. It's been a fun tradition--we actually hosted the first one a few weeks after we moved into this house!

So there you have it: four occasions in four days. I didn't do anything fancy for any of them, but people still appreciate the invitation. I hope you will consider opening your home sometime soon. And if you'd like to read more on this subject, I encourage you to visit Offering Hospitality!


Mom said...

Dear Carrie,

Great post -- thanks for sharing about your recent hospitality opportunities! :) Thirty years ago, the book that inspired me in a similar way was "Open Heart, Open Home" by Karen Mains. Over the years, we have hosted lots of people -- some planned, some impromtu. Some of my favorite memories are our hymn sing gatherings -- remember? These days it seems that our hosting is often in a different location than our home. And we are looking forward to the arrival of Monica and family tomorrow evening -- we'll be hosting them for several weeks! Love you lots, Mom

Carrie said...

Thanks, Carrie, for the link up and for sharing what you've been up to these days! I really appreciate hearing about things like this. I think when we share what we've been doing, it encourages and inspires others. So thanks for being part of the hospitality journey - for recovering a biblical perspective on it - and for spurring us on!

- Carrie, Offering Hospitality

Wendi said...

Love that the ice cream social has become a tradition!

I am still working on hospitality. I always feel like my home isn't big enough, clean enough... you get the picture. I am going to step out of my comfort zone and invite some people over when we return from vacation.

Jthemilker said...

An ice cream social? What a grand idea!!!

Jamie said...

I love your ice cream social idea. I am feeling challenged to do something simple with neighbors. We've been here for almost 1.5 years now and are on a friendly wave and quick chat basis with a few neighbors but not much more than that. It'd be nice to invite them for something.

Katie said...


I love how intentional you are being about *offering hospitality* and making do with what you have in the process. Thanks so much for sharing this practical inspiration ~ I guess it doesn't need to be difficult! 4 opportunities presented themselves and you graciously blessed many folks by being creative and taking the initiative. This definitely is fruit of wise stewardship and your giving nature! I pray that I can challenge myself in this area.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend!


Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

LOVE This!!! This is so in line with the sorts of things we keep kicking around lately.

Stephanie's Mommy Brain said...

Visiting from Offering Hospitality.

Wow! 4 opportunities to practice hospitality!! That's fantastic! I love the idea of an ice cream social. I can remember having those as a kid at church. Those who owned ice cream freezers would make home made ice cream and bring it. We had all kinds of ice cream and all kinds of toppings. Lots of fun!