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Transforming Our Love for Strangers (4TR)

Transforming Our Love for Strangers (4TR)

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Published by jeremyhoover

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Categories:Types, Speeches
Published by: jeremyhoover on Jul 22, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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10/25/2012

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Transforming Our Love for Strangers through Hospitality Hebrews 13:2 / Galatians 2:12 / Matthew 25:31-46
Hospitality is a sign of God’s grace and kingdom. We need to share it freely with others.Hospitality to strangers contrasts with fear of others..
 As children, we’re often warned to stay away from strangers.
 While this warning is good for children, if we do not evolve into a more mature,even biblical, understanding of “strangers,” we will be guilty of limiting ourhospitality. We often limit hospitality to those we like and are comfortable with.
Hospitality, if we practice it, is limited to our little group of people we like. Theothers can fend for themselves.
Hospitality is seen as a “gift” that only a few have; others don’t need to practice it.
Hospitality is very rarely given to those we don't know because of fear, and in worse cases, discrimination.Biblically, hospitality is a sign of God’s grace and kingdom that we need to share withothers.
Hospitality places our emphasis on “the other”--the other, the stranger, theforeigner--and seeks to meet their needs instead of ours.
In Galatians 2:12, we learn that Peter, a Jew, shared hospitality with someGentiles (non-Jews). Specifically, he shared table fellowship with them, which inhis world was a sign of acceptance. From his Christian vantage, this act alsoshared with them the grace of God.
But Peter also withheld grace when he refused hospitality when Jews from Jamesand Jerusalem arrived. Peter was fearful and allowed his fear of others to allow discrimination and he withheld hospitality.
Hospitality is a sign of God’s grace and kingdom. We need to freely sharehospitality with other without discrimination or fear.Practice hospitality by focusing on serving others and being welcoming.
In the ancient world, hospitality meant several things. For many, it was anattitude and a way of life. Travelers would be welcomed in, their needs met, andprovisions would even be given for the next stage of their journey. How can werecover this practice?
Have guests (not members only) over for Sunday dinner.
Serve a family in your neighborhood.
 Volunteer somewhere where you can share a welcoming attitude withanother.
Each of these actions, performed openly and honestly and with love,shares God grace with another. After all, isn't that what it means to be thesalt and light of the world?© 2010 Jeremy Hoover / jeremy@jeremyhoover.com / www.jeremyhoover.com

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