Make Them Welcome!

Aletha HinthornA friend and I were washing dishes in the kitchen when her husband arrived home from work. I expected her to call out, "Hi, hon. Glad you're home." But after a brief silence, I realized his coming was not significant. If no one welcomes us into their presence, we feel as if we're not worth welcoming.

In fact, we feel like non-people when we're not welcomed. A cleaning lady walked into an executive board meeting, and no one acknowledged her. She was not considered of enough value to address.

Jesus said, "I will receive you into myself" (Jn. 14:3). Those we love need to know they are significant to us. The welcome we extend indicates what we think of the other person. If we throw open our arms, our homes, and our hearts, we say, "You're important to me, and therefore, you are important."

As much as possible we want our homes to represent the safety of home base. Johnny hits the ball, passes first, second, and third and then slides into home base. "He's safe; he's made it!" his fans cheer. Home base describes the atmosphere we're to create in our homes.

To make home a prepared place is Christlike. John 14:2 states, "I go to prepare a place for you." Our Lord is making our heavenly home a prepared place, a place that says, "I've been expecting you!" We follow God's pattern when we prepare snacks for the children, an attractive table, light a candle or cook favorite foods. Whether your loved one has been gone a few hours or many weeks, these all say, "I've been excited about your return."

Dear Jesus, help me to welcome others just as You would.

"Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me" (Mark 9:37).
"No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" (1 Cor. 2:9).

Memory Verse for January  "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love" (Ephesians 4:2).