They ate together in their homes,
happy to share their food with joyful hearts.
How would you have liked to be the one who opened his home for Jesus?
You can be.
"Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it for me. (Matthew 25:40) As you welcome strangers to your table, you are welcoming God himself.
Something holy happens around a dinner table that will never happen in a sanctuary. Don't listen to that voice that everything must be perfect. If we wait until everything is perfect, we'll never issue an invitation. Remember this: what is common to you is a banquet to someone else. You think your house is small, but to the lonely heart, it is a castle. You think your living room is a mess, but to the person whose life is a mess, your house is a sanctuary. You think the meal is simple, but to those who eat alone every night, pork and beans on paper plates tastes like filet mignon. What is small to you is huge to them.
Open your table.
The Greek word for hospitality compounds two terms: love and stranger. The word literally means to love a stranger. All of us can welcome a guest we know and love. But, can we welcome a stranger?
Every morning in America more than 39 million people wake up in poverty. In 2008, 17 million households had difficulty providing food for their families. An estimated 1.1 million children lived in households experiencing hunger multiple times throughout the year. And this is America, the wealthiest nation in the history of the world.
When we provide food stamps, we stave off hunger. But when we invite the hungry to our table, we address the deeper issues of value and self-worth. Who would have thought? God's secret weapons in the war on poverty include your kitchen table and mine.