After living in the context of close community for four years during college,
I feared the abyss of post-grad life and
seriously questioned if my nights would look like frozen meals in the company of New Girl.
Thankfully, I happened upon a few wonderful souls with similar concerns in close proximity.
We met one Sunday evening in a cozy apartment, tossing salad and trying not to burn pizzas.
We stayed up till eyes turned sleepy, sharing stories, dreams, and our overall sense of aimless wandering (aka: our 20’s).
What I didn’t know was just how much this dinner turned supper club would teach me about the heart of hospitality and sanctification within community. The last six months have brought to life the truth in Bonhoeffer’s statement:
“It is grace, nothing but grace, that we are allowed to live in community with Christian brethren.”
From these women, I’ve learned that hospitality is not about matching plates, the square footage of my home, or five course meals.
Hospitality is a place of safety, where grace is extended, and people come to be heard, known, and loved well.
The table is where fragility and fellowship intersect, where our needs are nourished. We all need this sacred space to come to, a place to have our vulnerabilities welcomed, where facades removed, and we are celebrated and encouraged. I am thankful for this unexpected gift, this instrument by which God continues to reveal to me the beauty of others.
“We don’t come to the table to fight or to defend. We don’t come to prove or to conquer, to draw lines in the sand or to stir up trouble. We come to the table because our hunger brings us there. We come with a need, with fragility, with an admission of our humanity. The table is the great equalizer, the level playing field many of us have been looking everywhere for. The table is the place where the doing stops, the trying stops, the masks are removed, and we allow ourselves to be nourished, like children. We allow someone else to meet our need. In a world that prides people on not having needs, on going longer and faster, on going without, on powering through, the table is a place of safety and rest and humanity, where we are allowed to be as fragile as we feel.”
– Shauna Niequist