In my last blog post I asked the question “Is the Dinner Table the Vehicle for Revival?” You can read that article here
In that article I talked about 2 different sets of scripture where it seems like the place where the lost will be saved, healed and delivered is the dinner table.
As I’ve been contemplating how to make this work in our lives I have come to a realization. If we want to see the lost saved we are going to have to let strangers come into our house and eat with our family.
Let me explain.
In Luke 24 we find the story of the Emmaus Road. Two disciples are walking along the road talking about everything that has happened when a stranger walks up and starts to discuss the current events. Along the road this stranger (they haven’t realized it’s Jesus yet) explains to them all the scriptures that speak about what is happening. Once they reach Emmaus it says that Jesus continued as if he was going somewhere else. The two disciples stop him and ask him to stay with them and during the meal their eyes are opened and they see Jesus for who he really is.
I am excited for the day when people’s eyes are opened and they see Jesus for who he is as we eat together!
But that’s not what blows my mind about this passage.
It’s that the two disciples invited a stranger to come hang out with them in their house and spend the night!
I’m wondering if this is one of the reasons that people were added to the early church daily?
It was a part of their culture to open their doors to strangers.
In Romans 12:13 it says to “practice hospitality.”
The word that is translated here as practice literally means to pursue. One of the Strongs definitions of ‘dioko’ is ‘to run swiftly in order to catch a person or thing, to run after’.
So Paul was saying to the Roman Church to run after hospitality, pursue it like you were trying to chase down someone who just stole something from you.
Hospitality was such an important value for the early church that when Paul was giving instructions on the character traits that elders must have he included Hospitality as one of them.
1 Tim 3:2 “Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife,temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,”
Titus 1:8 “Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined.”
Look at what Peter said in 1 Peter 4:9 “Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.”
Which brings me back to strangers.
I want to pursue hospitality. I even want to do it without grumbling like the Bible says but I have 3 little kids and a tiny 600 square foot apartment. My little apartment is my oasis, my place to rest and recuperate. How can I have strangers here?
The writer of Hebrews says “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.”
Everyone wants the second part of that verse. I mean, Who wouldn’t like to hangout with Angels?
But how does it happen? It happens when we open our homes to strangers.
The other night there was a drunk/stoned weird guy hanging out in front of our apartment in the alley way. As I got out of my car he began to walk towards me. My first response was I might have to protect myself from this guy. My second thought was he might be an angel I need to invite into my home. My third thought was I’m gonna go into my house and hangout with my wife and kids.
I went with #3
Then I read what Matthew had to say in Matt 25:35 “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in…”
So…did I just miss an opportunity to serve Jesus? I don’t know.
But what I do know is this…if we’re going to see the lost saved and the sick healed around our dinner table it’s going to include inviting strangers you don’t know into your house, serving them some food and seeing what’s going on in their life.
How do you think you can live this out in a practical manner?
Leave me a comment below and let me know.