Let brotherly love continue.
Do not neglect hospitality,
for through it some have unknowingly entertained angels.
Be mindful of prisoners as if sharing their imprisonment,
and of the ill-treated as of yourselves,
for you also are in the body. (Heb 13:1-3)
Simple hospitality. It is something that many of us were raised to accomplish. I remember the lectures that I received by my mother (and grandmother) to be hospitable to others. “There is never any reason not to,” they would always say. There’s never any reason to be mean, to exclude, to shun, or to make someone feel unwanted.
My grandmother may have felt that way because she and her husband came to this country from Lithuania. They were not welcomed by all. As a matter of fact, even though my grandfather was an accomplished tailor in the old country, the unions would not let “a foreigner” enter the trade and practice at the level that he had back in Europe. He was forced to begin a new walk of life and became a pop bottler.
What happens when we mistreat others? First, we hurt the body of Christ of which we are all a part. In essence, we hurt ourselves. Second, we deprive others of chances they may need. Third, we deprive ourselves of the opportunity to practice the virtue of charity.
Additionally, we often forget that the Lord dwells in all people. We do not just mistreat others. We end up mistreating the Lord.
There is never a good reason to make someone feel unwanted. If we do, our action (or inaction) can come back to us. We reap what we sow, Jesus reminded us several times in the Gospels. Ann Landers said it differently, “Time heals all wounds and time wounds all heals.”
Do not be a heal. Do not mistreat. Do not be inhospitable. Instead, embrace others and be hospitable to them if for no other reason than for the fact that the Lord dwells in each and every one of us.
FAITH ACTION: If any opportunity presents itself to you today to be hospitable, make sure that you do it.