Friday, November 10, 2006

Entertaining

I love entertaining. I love to cook and enjoy making nice meals for people I care for and love. Tonight I had the pleasure of cooking for one of our friends who came in from New Hampshire. Usually when she comes into town it’s because of a conference of some kind and this time was no exception. She’s doing a workshop at our church tomorrow and is preaching on Sunday.

The difference this time was her plane came in early and I was able to cook her a meal. Hospitality is of high value to me. It’s something I also enjoy doing with Tom. It’s really fun to cook in the kitchen together. He’s a great cook! A good meal (at least I always hope it is) and a good bottle of wine, followed by a good cup of coffee and dessert. Now that’s a fun evening.

It’s not just important in the home to express hospitality, but also in the church. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, it’s the little things. How do you welcome someone to your home? Do you want them to feel comfortable? Do you feed them? Would they feel comfortable sitting on your furniture? These are questions I try to ask myself.

I remember when we first got here five years ago, the coffee served at the church was really bad. The pots that were used were old, and there was stuff on the inside that I know was against the laws of nature. Nobody drank the coffee. Who could blame them. It wasn’t even the correct color (I don’t think coffee is supposed to look like a weak cup of tea). People knew they would take their life in their hands if they had a cup. Everyone walked in with their own travel mugs.

So one day Tom asked me if I would take over the Coffee Ministry on Sundays. I thought about it and said, “No way. The coffee sucks. I don’t want people to get the wrong idea about me.”

He said, “Well babe that’s part of the problem. Could you fix it?”

Well, I’m always up for a challenge so I replied, “Okay, but it’s going to cost you.”

You see if someone comes to my house, I want to serve them fresh coffee and real creamer not the powered stuff. God only knows how long that stuff has been sitting on a self in the supermarket. So I purchased new coffee pots and bought muffins to sell on Sundays to cover the costs of the fresh creamers and better coffee. After a while others took over and made it even better. Now we have lattes and bagels as well as donuts on Sunday mornings.

My thinking was this, the church was God’s house and it’s important that those who enter feel comfortable and welcomed.

Are they feed? . . . spiritually and physically.
Do they feel at home? . . . Do they feel like visitors or do they hang out pass the time the service is over?

Our church is no better than anyone else’s, but I think that one of the things we do well is hospitality. A little kindness goes a long way.

© Nadine Z. 2006

9 comments:

Alpha Cursus said...

I loved your coffee story! I did the same thing at our church in holland. Here, they didn't have coffee afterwards. It took mny months, but now they wouldn't miss it.
Your eating story is good too. In the Alpha course, we serve meals once a week in a cozy atmosphere.
You would like the Alpha course. We also have 15 minutes of worship after dinner and before the talk. you could dance in the worship!
In jesus our wonderful Lord,
Ted

richlisad said...

You did good too. Feels like home when we are visiting you guys. Sounds so good I think we may come for some of your coffee this weekend.

Bless you.

A Woman Who is: said...

This is a comment to an old post. I followed your new post to this post for the story on "How Our Church Became so Cool" I should have known you were the hostess behind the warmth and welcome! Well done. Maybe you are thinking a little to well done, when we are still at church after one,one-thirty,two...oh dear. Hey I want to learn how to link old posts, that is way cool. Maybe Sat. night at the Den we can steal a few minutes together. You have me hooked girl :>)

yours truly B said...

Wow I feel like the outsider all these people seem to know you where is this really cool church again? I am looking for a new one.
wonderful story.

Cherrye said...

Did you actually MAKE the stuff in that picture? If so - will you be my mommy? ha ha, just joking...your church sounds like a lot of fun...

Melissa R. Garrett said...

Nadine, if my church served lattes and doughnuts, I would definitely be a regular attendee!

The next time you are at my site, look on my blogroll and click on The Reluctant Entertainer. I think you and Sandy would get along famously :-)

eph2810 said...

Oh.my.goodness. What a wonderful approach to church :)...If I think about Jesus 'preaching' the word, where was He? In people's homes, reclining at the dinner table :)....

Thank you for sharing.

Sandy said...

Nadine, are you my sister or what? I just came across your site .. which this post has similarities to mine. I am in your sister (in Christ) and I also live on the West Coast.
I'm sorry to read about your current situation with your husband and will check back in on you ...

~Billie~ said...

That sounds amazing! I love that you were able to make your church more welcoming. I wish a few of the ones around here would do the same. I agree a little hospitality goes a long ways. =)