Monday, December 22, 2008

Mi Casa Es Su Casa (My House is Your House)

Mi Casa Es Su Casa
(My House is Your House)

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(Special Note: the above photo is not my house, but it is beautiful, isn’t it?)

[At the Home of Martha and Mary] As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. ~
Luke 10:38 (NIV)

I love getting together with you each and every week to share with you some of the words, wisdom, and inspirations that God lays on my heart each week for the Speak to My Soul devotionals. It is my hope and prayer that you are being blessed by these words and that you are also able to walk away with something that you can apply to your lives right now (today).

This week my heart has been blessed by something as simple, and yet it can be hard, as opening up your home to others. In the verse above you see that Martha opened up her home to the disciples as they were passing through. I am sure that you have heard this story many times (but if you haven’t I would implore you to grab your Bible and go visit Mary & Martha in Luke chapter 10, you’ll love it) and I’m not claiming any new inspiration in that story, but what I have found that has impacted me was the fact that they “opened their home”.

We cannot love God unless we love each other. -Dorothy Day

It strikes me that in today’s world we are so busy and so jam packed in our schedules that most of us don’t take the time to really open ourselves up to meet each other in our homes. Sure, we talk over the internet, over our cell phones, house phones, text messaging, and various other means of technology, but the simple act of opening our homes to our friends, families, and neighbors is quickly fading away.

I live in South Florida and for a “southern” girl like me it has always been a struggle. I grew up waving to my neighbors, getting to know people, and spending time developing relationships with those around me, but here (for the most part, and I am sure this happens many other places as well) people go to work, pull into their driveway, drive right past each other, don’t wave, pull into their garage, close their garage, then get out and come into their house where they don’t come out again until they start all over the next day. Relationships have gone from a “community” approach to a more “robotic” feel.

It is not how much you do, but how much Love you put into the doing that matters. -Mother Teresa

I want to be different than that. I want to be the “me” that God created me to be. Clearly He has you and I right where we are so that we can be a blessing to those around us. Maybe it is at your work, your school, your carline, your neighborhood, wherever, there is a reason you are there.

How awesome would it be if we started to set the example, if we were to wave at our neighbors as we drove by, if we stopped to say hello, if we invited our friends & families over to our house just for the simple pleasure of spending time together.

This isn’t a new concept. As a former Small Group Pastor we used to talk about this verse a lot to the small group leaders and to those who were interested in joining a small group.

Acts 2:46 (NIV) - Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,

I truly believe that people WANT to be connected. They want to feel like they are a part of something bigger than them. As a matter of fact, this past weekend (yesterday to be exact, which is why this post is late), we opened up our home to the Youth Group at our church.


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Is that something we would normally do, nope, but is it something we will probably do again, you betcha. You know why? Because it was so incredible to see the kids laughing, growing, bonding, and enjoying being around each other. The funny thing is that it wasn’t just the kids that were having fun, the adults were having as much fun as they were.

We need to have a mindset of letting God use us to make somebody else’s life better. When we do that, then there's a joy released in us that we’re not ever going to get anywhere else. -Joyce Meyer

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The cool thing about it was that even though it took me two days to prepare (that’s the Martha in me) for everyone to come over, while they were all here I forced myself to be the Mary I knew I could be so I could soak up the joy of opening up my home to others.

It was so worth the work because in the end we have to get out there and open our homes up to others so we can all enjoy the blessings that God has in store for us. It doesn’t have to be perfect you just need to do it with a willing and obedient heart. God will take care of the rest.

Merry Christmas from Mel’s World!


Enjoy the Journey,


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3 Mel's World Friends Comments:

2TooManyHats 4:53 PM  

Yes, yes, yes...I so get what you are saying. Here in So Cal it is the same thing. People also commute to everything, so there is really no sense of community in a lot of ways.

We have always hosted a small group since we were young marrieds. This one simple thing has really helped me see that it is about the relationships not the state of the house. I struggle with the Martha/Mary thing too. In fact today I invited people over spur of the moment without any concern about the house, which is not in tip top shape.

Great reminders! I may have to blog about my experiences in this area and how Jesus has helped me grow.

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality 1:01 PM  

Hi, Mel, I hear you on that too. Growing up in a pastor's home, we had people over to our house ALL the time when I was young. And we visited a lot of folks in their homes too, it was so much more connected than things are today.

I have really struggled with this since moving from Atlanta to B'ham 3 years ago & trying to make new friends. It's very hard to do that these days, I'm finding out. We have a small group at church, but still are not connected with them during the week, only occasional socials. We have tried to do some get-togethers with our close by neighbors & that has been a bust. We are cordial with neighbors, but there is NO fellowship with them at all. I just tried to have a brunch & invited about 12 girls, only one could come (granted, it was a week's notice & Christmas season, so I know people are busy), but it does get discouraging. I would love to have more connection with people in real life, it's definitely a challenge! I left my best friends behind in Atlanta.

Good post! Merry Christmas, Mel!

Susan 2:40 PM  

God is SO TEACHING me this, right now!! You must stop by and read my little story about Christmas Eve at our house. It's this very concept at work. I plan to open more during 2009 cause I know it's how we build bridges between people.

Hugs,

Susan

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