Hospitality-Creating a Safe Place in a Hostile World

Practicing hospitality is to welcome the stranger..to respect all persons…..to joyfully and lovingly provide a place where people feel safe.

We live in such a hostile world.

Today all 60 public schools in Minneapolis were locked down because of a web posting that threatened a shooting at one of the schools.  This just doesn’t feel very safe.  It made me think of when I was in school.  We didn’t have lock downs.  What I remember is the nuclear attack drills where we had to crawl under our desks, face to the floor with our hands pressing agains the back of our necks.  I am not sure how that was supposed to save us in the event of nuclear attack but I do remember that it did not make me feel safe.  I think the incident today is so daunting because school shootings have happened and we all know it can be real. This is not a drill.  This could be the real thing.  I never had to worry about being shot at school.

The movie, “Up In The Air” also has a way of making us feel not too safe.  The movie shows one scene after another where people are told that their jobs are being eliminated.  They were fired, and, without notice.  This wouldn’t be so bad but it is happening all around us.  This stuff is real.  It is not a drill.

This list could go on and on.  Life just doesn’t feel safe.

This, to me, is why hospitality is so important.  Hospitality is a welcoming and a caring in a place of oasis. An oasis is a sanctuary; a haven.  An oasis is a place where weapons are banned.  All animosity is to cease when sojourners enter an oasis. An oasis is to be safe.  An oasis is where I know that I will be cared for.

What weapons can be banned at an oasis?  Guns, bombs and land mines for sure.  But what about sarcasm, insult, prejudice, rascism, ageism, sexism and the like?  What makes an oasis safe? An oasis becomes safe when the sojourner is listened to and embraced and accepted.  When we lean into the needs of others we make it safe for them and we allow them to make it safe for themselves and others.

Lord, make me a safe place.

Related Posts