Friday, November 1, 2013

Preparing the Way ~ Or Not: Hospitality

The Hospitality of Abraham

In her poem, "Making the House Ready for the Lord," Mary Oliver writes

Dear Lord, I have swept and I have washed but
still nothing is as shining as it should be
for you. Under the sink, for example, is an
uproar of mice  . . . (read the entire poem here).

How do  you prepare for the presence of God in all of God's intimacy and intensity during the holidays? 

You might think of holiday preparation as a matter of doing for others: cleaning, baking, decorating, purchasing and wrapping.    You prepare for the presence of God by preparing for others.

But how do you show hospitality to God through caring for yourself when those other preparations have become burdensome, painful, or perhaps no longer doable at all?

Who, or what, are the mice, the squirrels, the limp raccoon, the dogs, the cats, the foxes, the sparrows, the shivering sea-geese who have taken up residence in your own life?

Do you need to shoo them out the door?

Do you need to welcome them in some way that has not yet made itself known to you?

Do you need to make everything shine for God?

Or is God perhaps going to work on polishing up something for you which once became tarnished and which you believe cannot shine anew?



  1. I like to think that "God" can deal with my general personal messiness...

  2. Robin, thank you for this. would you mind if I use this as part of our advent worship?