The Gift of HospitalityNew Every Morning | February 14, 2023
I like to start sessions with what I call a “gathering silence”—a time for the director and directee to take a breath, close their eyes for a minute, gather thoughts, and release stress. When the directee is ready to begin the conversation, they end the silence with a simple “amen.” I have found this to be a comfortable welcome for most people, but every director finds their own way of welcoming a directee. I personally have loved the variety of hospitable gestures and have felt that each of my directors took time to consider my unique personality and story.
—Marsha Crockett, Sacred Conversation: Exploring the Seven Gifts of Spiritual Direction (Upper Room Books, 2022)
When have you experienced hospitality from a spiritual friend? Join the conversation.
Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers.
—Romans 12:13, NRSV
Prayer for the Week
Holy God, thank you for the gift of spiritual direction and for someone to accompany me on my journey of growing closer to you. Help me to remain open to suggestions my spiritual director offers and to pay attention to signs of your presence. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
This Lent, Roger Owens invites us to approach prayer and life differently through participating in Everyday Contemplative: A Lenten Online Experience. Together, we’ll explore a contemplative approach applicable to all spiritual practices—indeed, to life itself. Register here.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.
“hospitality from a spiritual friend” I’m trying to understand this phrase, especially “spiritual friend”.
I may have spiritual friends at church. Each brings different qualities, abilities. That we get along, accomplish tasks, share our thoughts, cares, and concerns, is helpful and appreciated. I’m thankful that people take an interest in me. I’m glad to communicate, help, and share in the same way.
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!
One Sunday during the divorce process, I went to the alter after church and knelt at the railing. When I was finiished with my prayers I opened my eyes to find one of the members. As I stood up, she embraced me. I truly needed that human touch and compassion. Thank you Lord for sending her at my time of need.
I have figured out a manner of communication with h that allows me to maintain my sanity and my health. He doesn’t like it and so is less likely to manufacture need or to deliberately extend communication needlessly. My stomach issues and acid reflux have so far this week not resurfaced.
I have a friend who was a seminary classmate. In the 30 years we have been friends, she has been there for me and imparted wisdom during the rough seasons. I was able to do the same for her, as she dealt with changes in family dynamics due to changes with her child. Our church family has been a tremendous support to us as well.
My heart is heavy today, as I learned my friend with cancer doesn’t have long. My sister Amy shared that she is really concerned about her kitty Kissaboo. He has been diagnosed with stomatitis and is having problems eating. He’s hungry, but it hurts his mouth to eat. She’s says it’s heartbreaking. He needs surgery, to remove bad teeth, but vet wants him to gain a little weight first. Pray that he can get some relief and be able to eat. Poor boy. He’s pitiful. David has a dr. appointment at 3.30. He’s had some swelling in his feet. We now have a working fridge. Praise God. After David’s appointment, we plan an early supper at our local Vietnamese cafe as a Valentine treat. Looking forward to fresh rolls and a bowl of steaming pho.
The hospitality which has meant the most to me is a quiet presence. No questions, gentle hugs and a willingness to listen when I am ready to talk. There is no pressure, there is stillness and peace. I try to be mindful of this when I am with another who does not need barraged with questions.
Another day of sunshine – a good thing I sound like a broken record. So unusual this time of year. I love that my desk is right next to a window…I see joggers, cyclists, people walking their dogs.
I have a meeting after school – which I will likely leave early, as I have to stop by and feed the kittens. I then need to head to the post office to get my sister’s mail – dad and Don want what has been held. And issue another hold, until my sister returns middle of March. Luckily it is in the general direction of my god son’s basketball game later this evening. Will have to grab something to eat in there as well. Too hectic of a day, but all things are important in their own way. Tomorrow is no less busy – but I am keeping in mind arriving in Florida to be with my family Friday morning.