“The Lord appeared to Abraham by the oaks of Mamre, as he sat at the entrance of his tent in the heat of the day. He looked up and saw three men standing near him. When he saw them, he ran from the tent entrance to meet them, and bowed down to the ground.” - Genesis 18:1-2
This week we will enter Abraham and Sarah’s story through Genesis 18. The text has much to say, and it gives us a glimpse into our call to be hospitable people. In the verses above, we watch as Abraham sees strangers coming toward him and as he runs out to greet them. He will invite them in, and with Sarah, offer food and drink.
Our call to offer hospitality to others is a part of these early origin stories in Genesis. With our hospitality we are showing what it means to be people of God, and offering the love and grace we have found. The hope of this hospitality is that others will experience God’s love and grace for themselves - through our actions, and as we point to the living God who loves us so.
Every Sunday morning we have the opportunity to offer this hospitality to others. As you may have noticed, we have been receiving around 4-8 guests every Sunday. We need your help in extending hospitality. While you don’t literally have to run out to greet them, it we should be excited to offer a “Hello” and a “Welcome to Red Bridge!” You don’t have to bow, but introduce yourself and ask them “We are so glad that you are here, what is your name?” You don’t have to go and make a meal, but you could extend an offer to enjoy our Sunday morning treats and coffee. In doing these small things, you are following a long Biblical tradition of welcome.
We will especially have opportunities to welcome in the coming weeks as we have special events in and around the church. These events give us the opportunity to extend hospitality to those who may be experiencing Red Bridge UMC for the first time. Here are some opportunities to practice your welcome:
October 14th: Lion’s Pride South KC Block Party. Volunteers needed from 10am-3pm.
October 23rd: Messy Church at 6pm. We had lots of new families join us in September, and anticipate a larger crowd in October! Join us on the 23rd, and help us make bread dough.
October 31st: Hot Dogs for Halloween from 5-6:30pm. We will be offering parking, food, and a few games for those Trick-R-Treating in our neighborhood.
...and every Sunday!
I hope that you will join me in answering God’s call to be welcoming and hospitable people.
See you in church!