Church

Are You Interested?

The communities we want to nurture are based on hospitality, a welcome of strangers to reflect God’s welcome of everyone. Vitality of worship, depth of spirituality, community impact: all of these, I think, can flow from earnest hospitality exhaustively practiced.

A starting point for hospitality is an honest interest in the one being welcomed. This is so little practiced in the world. When was the last time you experienced the eager interest of someone who wasn’t selling something? Where are the spaces that are interested in you for you? Church communities should be those spaces.

Directions to the restrooms and easy-to-understand worship bulletins are prerequisites for hospitality, but the substance of the thing itself can be a curiosity about one another that leads us to mutual learning and growth. This involves observations as much as questions. “You seem to know a lot about X”; “Your work sounds fascinating”; “You just moved here? I’ll be that was an adventure.”

I just don’t think we experience the honest interest of our fellow human beings very much, and when we do it can wake us up to the movement of God in our life. When other people take an interest in some part of our story, we’re allowed to as well.

Churches should be the most interested places people encounter. Not, like, trying to act interest for the sake of appearing “nice”–no, actually interested, which will take some adjusting on our part and a willingness to receive what we’re inviting people to share.

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3 thoughts on “Are You Interested?

  1. Interested should extend beyond the walls. If interested is real, of course the interested party would want to stay involved in the stuff of a person’s life

    Except that often seems a bridge too far

    I’ve been toying with the idea of creating a new hashtag. Like throwback Thursday or follow Friday, #sundaysupport to promote creative projects or even Non projects of friends

  2. I know there are reasons and excuses, but I’m a bit frustrated with church people’s preciousness about support. when I started boosting my Twitter efforts I thought I would start with church people, thinking I would get support for a Christian book in such circles.

    The church people, and I targeted pastors, could not be bothered to notice that I was trying to get attention. Perhaps they were not informed about Twitter ettiquette that you should follow back. Okay.

    Some of them, most notably yourself Rocky, did follow back.

    And them when I lost my job last week, I cross posted on Twitter and Facebook about it. You gave some sympathy, and Aric did too, on Facebook

    But no fewer than a dozen STRANGERS from all over the world took time to send me encouragement and talk to me about it.

    I am not saying this to make you feel bad Rocky. I am sharing this because you have a broad readership and I want to point this out.

    I agree. What does the church have to offer if not community and support? Let’s get on it and be wild fans of one an other

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