I am not sure how big your table is, but I am sure it is not as big as Nehemiah’s – he seemed to fit 150 people around it!
Admittedly, the phrase ‘ate at my table’ may have simply meant that he provided food for 150 people each day, but it is still an incredible image of hospitality.
This provision was not just for locals but also people from the surrounding nations. The Greek word for hospitality is xenia, the idea of creating home for the stranger or making someone feel at home.
Often our homes become our refuge, a place to relax after a day at work and escape from the world.
Especially during the recent pandemic and ensuing lockdown, we had no choice but to isolate from one another at home.
In some cases we have become fearful of the unknown, we teach children to be wary of strangers, and our homes become our castles. But hospitality is an attitude, not a location.
The biblical image of hospitality is no more profound than the moment when Jesus is dying and He looks at the criminal who asked to be remembered by Him and said, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43).
Hospitality is not about having the biggest table, but about having a bigger heart. Always having room for one more.
Whether that be room for one more in our conversations, activities, dining tables, or inviting one more into the Kingdom of Heaven.
A Prayer To Make:
‘Lord, thank You that when we were strangers You welcomed us in. That You first loved us before we even knew You. Help us to reflect Your love by the way we love others. Amen.’
An Action To Take:
What could you do to create room for one more? Think about who you could invite in, whether that be into your home, into your conversations or into your activities.
Scripture To Consider:
Ps. 23; Matt. 25:31–46; Luke 23:26–43; Heb. 13:1–3