By Christa Gutschenritter, Passionate Homemaking
Image: P&G Everyday
The Ministry of Hospitality
We, as single women, have such a precious opportunity to extend hospitability to those around us. I am reminded of Proverbs 31, “She extends her hand to the needy”, we are in a special season that allow us more liberty to reach out and nurture others through our home. Neighbors, co-workers, relatives, single mothers, needy families – all of these are prime recipients. Have you ever fed a bunch of single guys? Talk about grateful recipients- girls this is a ministry! (who knows what doors may open up? LOL)
Not only can this be a dynamic ministry as a single woman, it is also key preparation for being a hospitable wife. The ability to extend gracious hospitatliy doesn’t suddenly materialize when you get married- no, it takes practice and experience. Use your single years to figure out what works for certain events, how to create dynamic conversation and a sequence of events, what games to include, decor, and how to prepare a simple dinner or a four course feast!
Get your friends and family involved in your hospitality. Singles, in particular, love to come and help beforehand. Work together, the memories are priceless. Our Valentines Banquet was certainly a family affair, I administrated while my brothers donned their servers uniforms, and us girls busied ourselves in the kitchen work. My parents took charge of the program and everything went as smooth as silk. (course there was that chocolate disaster in the kitchen… but we won’t mention that. )
This isn’t rocket science. Take baby steps, don’t bite off more than you can chew. Perhaps the first step is something as simple as preparing ice tea for your neighbor after they finished mowing the lawn, or inviting the neighbor kids over for cookies. (Think of the ministry possibilities- become known as Aunty “Christa” who always has cookies ready after school!)
Keep it Practical
-Plan ahead and keep your shopping list handy so you can procure the groceries when convenient.
-Keep a Hospitality notebook. Running lists of games and ideas for the different events you host.
-Keep the cooking simple, it’s about the guests not the display.
-Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. It rarely goes exactly as you planned, and even the best cooks have food disasters- just enjoy the journey and don’t give up.
-PRAY, bathe your event in prayer, particularly that your guests would leave built up and feel the love of Christ.
Hospitality is incredibly fun and very rewarding. Once you start you’ll never stop.