How To Prepare Your Home for Guests: Christian Hospitality
When we think about preparing our homes for guests, I think a good question to ask is,
“What can we do to make people feel honored and loved?”
Doing what we can to make other people feel loved is the heart of hospitality.
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When we have the right heart attitude, those extra efforts we take to welcome guests into a tidy space and those special little touches that indicate we’ve put some thought into making them feel comfortable are not about impressing people. Instead, they’re about letting your guest know that they’re worth it!
Hospitality is a ministry. As Christians, we have the blessed honor of taking part in Christ’s mission with him. Drawing people towards the love of God so that they, too, can know him is a holy undertaking. God can move in any context, but we are instructed to “prepare the way” for him (Matt. 3:3).
It’s not about us. When we prepare and make an effort for others it places a value on them. It tells them they are important and worthy.
When I prepare my home for guests, I like to think of the five senses. Going down the checklist, I try to address each one in a way that is pleasing.
Smell: A clean house is the basis for a pleasant smelling house. If there are cats in the house, a clean litter box is a must. Scented candles and/or diffused oils are always a nice touch.
Taste: Coffee, tea, a cold drink, some crackers and cheese or cookies…
Sound: Play some soft music over the stereo.
Sight: Again, a clean house is the first necessity. Remove extra clutter, turn on table lamps, and if possible, add flowers.
Touch: I would put air temperature under this category. Be generous with the air conditioning in the hot months and the heat in the cooler months. Placing soft throw pillows and blankets around the living area also adds a welcoming touch.
I’ve created a couple of checklists for you that I hope will be helpful. They are simply ideas to jog your thinking and not a set of “rules”.
Most importantly, remember that hospitality is a response of love towards God and others, in recognition of the amazing love that God has shown to us.
What about you? Share some of your favorite tips for preparing your home for guests?
Last week's post on hospitality: 10 Ways to Love Your Neighbors