Spiritual clutter is usually a bad thing, but sometimes persistent, nagging thoughts are actually useful.
Thoughts like We haven’t gotten together with them in ages or I’d really like to get to know her better can remind us to reach out to the people in our lives. They could even be Holy Spirit Nudges, urging you to minister to others and deepen your relationships through hosting.
We can accomplish the Lord’s work and further the Kingdom of Heaven through the gift of our homes. Romans 12:12-13 says, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”
There it is, in the Bible, right next to hoping and praying and giving, God calling us to practice hospitality—it’s not a suggestion! Through hosting, we can serve and uplift fellow Christians as we grow in faith with them. And when we host non-Christian friends and acquaintances, our homes and families reflect the power of the Lord in our lives.
So, take a few minutes to ask the Lord whom He’d like you to host. Would your women’s group grow closer together during a social night at your home? Would you like to reach out to an unchurched neighbor? Is there an old friend you haven’t seen in a while? Or a new family at church you’d like to get to know? Give them a call!
I know there are plenty of reasons not to have people over to your home, but you can overcome those obstacles with prayerful thought and intentionality. You don’t need an impressive house, an impressive party budget, or even an impressive reason to host a gathering—for two or for twenty! Here are some ideas to get your juices flowing…
For Play Dates
In the kitchen: Help the kids make cookie dough and bake it on a pizza pan for a Big Cookie Play Date. Or have everyone spread their favorite toppings on mini-pizzas and stay for lunch.
In the backyard: Host a mini-Olympics with running, jumping, and throwing challenges. If you’re worried about the competition aspect, have the kids design a big obstacle course instead.
In the family room: Host a party where beloved toys are the guests of honor: a Teddy Bear Picnic, a Princess Tea Party, or a Doll Birthday Party. Try to let the kids plan as much of the party as possible—making snacks and decorations can be part of the fun!
Game night: Ask your guests to bring an appetizer (or dessert—chocolate!) and their favorite party game. Or choose a game like Euchre or Bunco and rotate seating so everyone plays with everyone else over the course of the night.
Craft night: Invite your favorite crafters over to knit or scrapbook (and talk and eat, of course). Or, lay out your supplies and ask all your friends over for a night of simple crafting, like card-making or jewelry-making. (It’s OK to ask them to chip in a few dollars for the necessary materials.)
Potluck Dinner: A church classic! Have your guests bring their favorite simple dish to share. Make it a recipe swap by asking everyone to bring the recipes for their dish and one other easy favorite.
For Girl Time
Two for Tea: Ask a friend to come over for a chat after your kids are tucked in bed. There’s nothing like a quiet nighttime house and a cup of tea to bring on those deep heart-to-heart discussions.
Spa Night: Break out the foot soaks, face masks, cucumbers, and chocolate. Paint those nails and girl talk until they’re dry… very dry!
Twice as Fast: Ask a close friend over to help you with a simple, no-brainer project, anything from cutting out hearts for a school valentine party to painting a small room. Many hands do make light work… and fun conversation makes it fly by!
You can make anything a party, and there’s always a reason to celebrate:
an accomplishment, the first or last day of something, a new skill learned, an un-birthday… be creative!
And be intentional about hosting. Enjoy your family and friends. Make new friends, and wonderful memories.
Giving Thought to Your Ways (a la Proverbs 14:11)
- Think through the different people and relationships in your life—whom is God calling you to host?
- What are your obstacles to hosting? How can you overcome those obstacles in order to host more?
- What is the first kind of get-together you’d like to host? Get inviting!
Would you like some organizational help so you can enjoy hosting even more? Check out the Organizing You books
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