Welcoming guests

Many years ago, I came across a very original poem in a Christian Science Sentinel, entitled HOSPITALITY, by Jocelyn Birch.  It immediately appealed to me, and I would regularly companion with the words when hosting get-togethers in our home...

I cannot offer you gracious living

As the world understands these things.

My house is not filled with priceless treasures,

Nor can I prepare for you exotic dishes

And serve them with elegance and sophistication.

I do not have these skills.


But when you come to the door of my thought,

I will welcome you in,

And will light for you

My candle of inspiration.


I will break with you the bread of Truth.

I will show you all I have seen 

Of the matchless beauty of Soul,

And we will speak of the perfection

Of Mind’s ideas.


Most of all, I will enfold you in love,

And I will send you forth again

Surrounded by angels.



In recent years, my husband and I have attended his School Reunion luncheons, hosted by some of his old school friends.  Traditionally, we take it in turns to host the luncheon, and this year, it was our turn to roll out the red carpet!    The event slowly began to loom in my thought, and the prospect of hosting a formal lunch and spending time with people I didn’t know very well was very unsettling, to say the least!    I knew without a shadow of a doubt that it was right to host the gathering, so I held to the  thought that if it was a right idea, it would BE all right.   In the days leading up to the lunch, I companioned closely with this little poem about HOSPITALITY, knowing that Love had been before us, and would take care of every aspect of the day.


And so it proved.  The conversation flowed, the meal was greatly appreciated, and I tangibly felt the presence of the Christ as we shared several happy hours with our friends. The weather forecast had been atrocious, but as our guests arrived, the sun came out, and we initially spent some time in the garden, enjoying the profusion of flowers everywhere and exchanging helpful gardening tips!  During the lengthy luncheon inside, it poured with rain, but when our guests were ready to head for home, the sun was shining again!   


The last few lines in the HOSPITALITY poem were very much in thought as our friends drove away late that afternoon:


“Most of all, I will enfold you in love,

And I will send you forth again

Surrounded by angels”.

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