I have been really enjoying the current sermon series, Sometimes it Takes a Table.

At least for the most part.

I’m a visual person and being able to picture Christ at an actual, physical table or with actual, physical loaves and fishes really helps me to engage. However, every time I have sat through this sermon series I have sensed the Holy Spirit asking me to do something that feels quite uncomfortable…

Fence between ne

Why is it so hard to walk next door?

Every Sunday the Lord has brought to mind the same people to invite over for dinner – our next door neighbors. The conviction gets stronger with each passing week.

Why haven’t I done it yet? Bottom Line: Fear.

Inviting guests into my home is scary for me – especially if I don’t know them well. I’m a perfectionist and I really care about what other people think about me. I also have a 10-month-old who just started walking and we have baby barriers up all over the house… not to mention the mess of toys. On top of that, I’m not a confident cook. I’m working on honing this skill but I constantly worry if my food tastes good enough.

I have spent years trying to be okay with imperfection and seeking to remember that it is the relationships that count.

That it’s good to be vulnerable and open.

That if things aren’t perfect, that’s okay.

My guests’ home probably isn’t perfect either.

My hosting mindset is a work in progress.

We really like our neighbors. They are our parents’ age and have been very friendly with us. We share tools and talk over the fence. It really helps that they’re extroverted since hubby and I tend to be on the quieter side with neighbors.

On top of that, I love listening to people’s stories and I want to hear their story. To know them better as people. This couple is the third occupant of the house next door since we moved in seven years ago.

I have missed connecting well with each occupant so far.

I don’t want to miss out again.

However, I know our spiritual beliefs are different and I’m nervous about relational conflict that could arise from these differences. I wonder if we’ll all get along okay once we’re around the table. I’m worried that this might hurt our relationship rather than build it.

I’m pretty sure the Lord isn’t going to let me off the hook and we will end up inviting our neighbors over. I’ll let you know how it goes.

I wonder what I’ll cook?

Written by Liz Udall
Liz is a wife, blogger. and stay-at-home mom to her son Jonathan. Read more of her story on her blog, In the Shade of the Linden Tree.

 

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