Open Your Eyes: Service is the Second Grace
The Bible teaches us “freely you have received, freely give.” Abraham understood that he did not deserve the promise nor had he done anything to earn it. It was simply being credited to him because he trusted God. That trust in God shows up in Abraham as confidence because he knows he will be taken care of. We see this confidence in the way Abraham treats the three strangers that approached his tent at Mamre. He invited them in for a meal. He showed the strangers hospitality. That is humble confidence.
When we willingly adopt a servant’s posture and truly bear the burdens of our neighbor, that is when we all become equals. Superiority vanishes as does our selfish behavior. God built this into our being. Darwin believed that sympathy was our strongest instinct.
While I was in Houston serving the Jubilee Prison Ministry, I met a young lady who had recently been released. While incarcerated she had been given the opportunity to participate in a Jubilee weekend. It impacted her in such a profound way she chose after being released to drive from El Paso to Houston and support the team I was on. She served by helping in the food preparation and praying for us all weekend. She, like Abraham, understood what real hospitality meant.
Call to Action: The next time you eat at a fast food restaurant, buy the stranger in your midst their meal and invite them to eat with you. Show them you care as you would a brother or sister because they are.
Prayer: In my job I travel a lot and occasionally I will find this prayer in my hotel room:
To Our Guests
In Ancient times there was a prayer for “the stranger within our gates.” Because this hotel is a human institution to serve people, and not solely a money-making organization, we hope that you will be granted peace and rest while you are under our roof. May this room and hotel be your “second home.” May those you love be near you in thoughts and dreams. Even though we may not get to know you, we hope that you will be comfortable and happy as if you were in your own home. May the business that brought you our way prosper. May every call you make and every message you receive add to your joy. When you leave, may your journey be safe. We are all travelers. From “birth till death” we travel between the eternities. May these days be pleasant for you, profitable for society, helpful for those you meet, and a joy to those who know and love you best.
Thursday March 1, 2018