My church has been doing a series on hospitality for the past four weeks. One of the pastors defined hospitality as a tangible expression of God’s love. He said hospitality is like comfort food for the soul. It’s like a bowl of mashed potatoes covered in butter, or a grilled cheese sandwich with a bowl of Campbell’s Tomato Soup, or maybe a plate of Ruby’s Fried Chicken and her famous collard greens. When you bite into your favorite comfort food cooked by someone who cares enough for you to prepare it you feel loved. A feeling of physiological and emotional comfort passes from your taste buds through your heart and then to the rest of your body.
Hospitality does the same thing! It is a practical and tangible way to communicate the love God has for every one of us. When the pastor was preaching I wanted to stand up on my seat in the auditorium and shout, “That is exactly what we do at David’s Refuge!” We exist to show hospitality to moms and dads who need to know they are loved and not alone. We want them to experience physiological and emotional comfort as they bask in the “comfort food” David’s Refuge has to offer. While we may not offer them a plate of meatloaf and gravy or a bowl of macaroni and cheese, we do give them a quite space to rest and reconnect. We offer a sympathetic and compassionate ear by someone who can relate to you as a parent of a special needs child. Gift baskets, a chocolate found on your sheet after turndown or a massage communicates you are loved and it fills your soul.
We are always looking for creative ways to offer hospitality to our guests. I would love to hear your creative and crazy ideas as to how we can better provide “comfort food” for our parents at David’s Refuge. Help us to help them know they are not alone, that what they do matters, and that God loves them with an extravagant love.