“Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.”
1 Pet 4:9
So 1 Peter commands us to love one another, and show hospitality in accordance with our different giftings. So out of these three commands – why does it add the modifier of doing hospitality without grumbling?!? Obviously it’s because that can be a common companion with hospitality.
I’m sure you’ve seen it. You go over to someone’s house and they’re so apologetic over their messy living room or they are stressed getting everything ready and barely even talk to you. Would you say these people are doing hospitality with joy? Probably not. Now I must confess I’ve been there. I’ve had events or people over where I wanted everything to go perfect and my timing was wrong or my house was messy and I was anxious and frustrated and had the wrong heart attitude. And we’re not alone – think about Mary and Martha!!
“Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”
Martha was serving well – I bet she had a wonderful dinner in the works and was sweeping the floors until they were spotless. But her heart was in the wrong place. She was serving for serving’s sake. Not for Jesus’ sake. Now don’t hear me wrong – the daily chores of straightening up, cleaning the toilet, and making dinner can all bring honor to Jesus. But our heart has to want to be there, instead of our motivation being a clean house or for others’ approval at what we have done. Do all without grumbling. Yes, hospitality is hard. Cleaning the house is hard work. Figuring out a meal or stretching the budget to include more servings is difficult. Sometimes your day doesn’t go as you plan it to. You have to work late or the baby is fussy all day and you can’t get anything done. I’m not going to pretend the temptation to grumble isn’t there. But I encourage you to fight it.
Jesus is magnified when we work hard and serve well for HIS glory and not our own. How can you honor God in showing hospitality this week?