Lingering Over Coffee and Apple Pie
Pie making day had arrived. Each fall our family spent one entire Saturday making apple pies for the freezer. Someone would peel the apples, another would slice them, and others would combine the filling ingredients or make the pie crust.
We baked them, let them cool and then stored them in the freezer for when unexpected guests would arrive. Some years we made over 40 pies in a day. But why go to all that trouble?
Our family lived in rural farm country. Family and friends would drop by, often unannounced, to sit over coffee and visit. If we hadn’t recently baked something fresh, out would come an apple pie, placed in the oven and soon the aroma of cinnamon and apples would waft through the house.
That time of fellowship was as common in our world as meeting at a restaurant is today. We didn’t know who would show up, but the joy of sharing dessert with coffee or tea while discussing life’s joys and struggles provided a nice break from daily farm life. The connections and caring were authentic and genuine. People shared life and knew how to encourage or step in when help was needed.
We see less of this type of hospitality today and more virtual connections through social media and texting. Yet, I think we miss something that I experienced growing up.
In our Pinterest driven world where it can look so perfect as we scroll through ideas, life is rarely that way. Some (or maybe most) days the house isn’t clean, the laundry is piled on the floor, the dishes are stacked precariously in the sink and the dining table is covered with homework or projects. Yet, that shouldn't discourage us from demonstrating hospitality.
In I Peter 4:9 we are commanded to demonstrate hospitality to others. “Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.” Although preparing for guests does take work, we can prepare with the anticipation of connecting with others, sharing of what we have, and encouraging those we have known for years or are just getting to know.
I'm challenged to make my home a place that is inviting and comfortable without buying into the idea that everything must be perfect. Are you challenged as well? Perhaps you don’t have a place of your own to invite people in. Maybe it means meeting at a park, restaurant or coffee shop. The location isn’t as important as the connection. Whether sharing a cup of coffee or planning a full meal, it is important to make time in our lives to invest in others by demonstrating hospitality. The rewards of connecting with others and deepening friendships creates a richer life than anything social media can supply.