the good way

Being Guest and Host

Session 6 • Hospitality • Activation

Some of us are so willing to be the generous host, and less willing to be the weary, vulnerable traveller. In order to move towards spiritual wholeness, we need to be able to do both. Jesus was both guest and host. Jesus allowed himself to be ministered to. Do you tend to feel more comfortable as host or guest?

Personal Reflection:

Being a Guest

Spend some time reflecting on an occasion when you were the guest.

  • What did your host do that made you feel welcome/unwelcome?
  • What were you able to contribute as a guest?
  • How was hospitality modeled for you?
  • When have you been so deeply received that the welcome touched your soul?
  • When have you been wounded because you were not welcomed and received?
  • How has the welcome of Jesus touched your life and your wounds?
  • How comfortable are you with being served by others?

“It is better to receive hospitality than to offer it.” Abba James of the Desert

Being a Host

Spend some time reflecting on an occasion when you were the host.

  • How did it feel to host others?
  • In what ways do you enjoy serving others?
  • What did you receive as a host?
  • How do you imagine your guests felt in your presence?
  • How relaxed/anxious were you about the preparations?
  • In hindsight, were you preoccupied by entertaining or by extending hospitality?
  • Where do you struggle with doing everything perfectly?
  • Were you able to accept help from guests if/when it was offered?

“As long as we are lonely, we cannot be hospitable because as lonely people we cannot create free space. Our own need to still our inner cravings of loneliness makes us cling to others instead of creating space for them.” Often in our loneliness, we have such an intense desire to be liked that we become hyper sensitive to anything that causes us to feel rejected.” Henri Nouwen

Spend some time in prayer bringing before Jesus all that you have noticed about yourself and your comfort levels with giving and receiving. Invite Jesus to teach you how to become more receptive and open. Ask Jesus to teach you how to be a gracious guest and host.

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