Tag Archives: hospitality

Who Invited You?

You Invited Who?

by Brenda Wood

Who invited you?

So Uncle Joe (or Aunt Martha or Cousin Peter) won’t be invited to the holiday party this year because of what they said about us at the last one.

I felt justified in such decisions until I read the following verses.

Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant curse thee: for oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise hast cursed others (Ecclesiastes 7:21-23, KJV).

And if you think the King James Version is a little foggy, try The Message on for size.

Don’t eavesdrop on the conversation of others. What if the gossip’s about you and you’d rather not hear it? You’ve done that a few times, haven’t you—said things behind someone’s back you wouldn’t say to his face (Ecclesiastes 7:21-23, MSG)?

I guess I have some praying, forgiving and inviting to do. (tweetable)

How about you?

Prayer:

Father God, we are just as guilty as the other guy. Sort out the differences between us and help us make amends. For Christ’s sake. Amen

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

WELCOMING JESUS

Mark Roberts writes a daily devotional at High Calling blogs. I am reprinting two of these as they deal with Mary and Martha. The first one deals specifically with Martha. On Thursday we see Mary.

Welcoming Jesus

by Mark D. Roberts (reprinted with permission)

Read: Luke 10:38-42 NLT

“As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed them into her home” [Luke 10:38].

As Jesus and his disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came upon a small village. There, “a woman named Martha welcomed them into her home” (10:38). In fact, the Greek original of this verse is even more specific. It says that Martha “welcomed him,” which is to say, Jesus, into her home. From the Gospel of John, we know that Jesus was a friend of Martha and her family (see John 11), but Luke does not mention this. He begins his short account of Jesus’ visit by focusing on Martha’s act of receiving Jesus graciously into her home.

The main point of this short story in Luke comes later in the passage, when Jesus gently rebukes Martha for worrying too much about “all these details” after Martha complains that her sister, Mary, isn’t helping out. I’ll reflect on the end of the story tomorrow. Today, however, I want to dwell on Martha’s welcoming of Jesus. Luke puts it simply at the end of verse 38: “Martha welcomed him.”

The verb translated here as “welcome” means “to receive warmly and graciously.” By using this verb, Luke indicates that Martha did more than simply letting Jesus and his entourage stay in her home. Rather, she opened, not just the front door, but also her heart. No doubt, she offered Jesus an opportunity to rest and be refreshed. In fact, her effort to prepare a “big dinner” was part of her hospitality. Martha wanted Jesus to feel truly at home with her and her family.

Martha’s example makes me wonder if I welcome Jesus into the home of my life. Forty-eight years ago, at a Billy Graham crusade, I prayed to “accept Jesus as my Savior.” At that time, I “asked him to come into my heart.” To the extent that a six-year-old boy was able to do so, I welcomed Jesus. But what about today? I still believe in Jesus, but do I really welcome him into my life. Do I really want him to be at home in me? Do I make myself available to him each day? Are there parts of myself that I withhold from Jesus?
… Now, I’d encourage you to consider the same questions I’ve been asking myself.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: When did you first welcome Jesus into your life? Do you welcome him each day? Why or why not? Are there parts of your life that are “off limits” to Jesus? How might you welcome him more consistently and generously?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, even as Martha once welcomed you into her home, I want to receive you in my life. I want to throw open the door and embrace you. I want to give you the best place in my life. I want you to be fully at home with me.

I do want all of these things, Lord. But, I must confess, there are times when I keep you knocking at the door. There are other times when I let you in, but don’t pay attention to you. And then there are times when I allow you to come into my life, but do not give you run of the house. Forgive me, Lord, when I am an ungracious host to you.

O Lord, may I welcome you fully, eagerly, and without restraint. May I welcome you, not only into the tidy living room, but also into the messy places of my life. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus! Amen.