Lately I’ve been thinking about hospitality.
But not the kind where I’m hospitable to others…
For awhile (I’m looking at you 2013 and 2014) I’ve been doing and doing like a crazed person.
Sometimes that’s how life is for a season or so, but once you realize it, you get to make the decision to keep going in that direction or change things. Sometimes changing things means other people might misunderstand you. It’s still worth it.
Having people over to our home is the best thing Chad and I do together–one of our greatest joys in life, but even good things have their limits.
We were supposed to have new friends over for dinner last night. Yesterday at lunch we cancelled.
I’m not even sure what Chad told them. Maybe he told them I was sick? It wouldn’t be a lie, because in a way I am, but it’s not because I have a fever. It’s because I haven’t allowed my house to be hospitable towards me. He texted me that he cancelled, I read it and then I cried.
I cried because I really wanted to have them over and get to know them.
I cried because I was so glad he cancelled so now I could stay in my yoga pants and dirty hair.
I cried because I want to be a person who has the margin and clarity of thought to welcome new friends into our home and ask meaningful questions and then listen to their answers. Right now I am not that person.
It’s not fair for me to invite people into my home if I don’t have the room to listen.
If I don’t have room to listen that means I need to pay attention to myself and make a change.
If I can’t set a table graciously for myself, how can I set it for others?
If my home isn’t a place for me to rest, be, learn, hide and grow, then it will never be that place for others, no matter how passionate I am about it.
I’ve been a guest in a home when the people should have cancelled and it’s agonizing–for everyone. I wanted to call a time-out and explain that we all know that we have no business being in their house right now and that I’ll pack all the dinner prep in the refrigerator and clean up and that they should just go to bed. We’ll show ourselves out. No hard feelings.
I’m learning to let my house minister to me first, so that I can then minister to others.
I’m fooling no one if I try to pour out to someone else, when I have nothing to give.
And I’m wasting all our time if I try to fake it.
INTJs don’t fake things. It’s one of our strengths that get confused with being mean.
Maybe the thought of inviting people in sounds exhausting, not because you are a bad person but because you are a tired person.
We have permission to say no. We have permission to say nevermind, we have permission to choose to take care of ourselves first so that we can more fully give to others.