The 6 Characteristics for Lent: Gracious

March 20, 2020  •   Tracy Earl Welliver

Hand with pencil looking at travel map

Vacations can be great times for refueling the body and renewing bonds within a family and between friends. No matter how good the vacation was, it is almost always good to get home when it is over. Sleeping in our own bed, taking a shower in our own bathroom, and resting on our own couch are some of the aspects of home we can miss while on the road. That’s why encountering truly gracious and hospitable people while we are away is so important. These people are not family, but they sure can provide for us a glimpse of home. They can be waiters at a restaurant, desk hosts at a hotel, or even Uber drivers. They enrich our lives if for only a moment, yet that moment can make all the difference.

When disciples of Jesus Christ act in a gracious manner to all those they meet, they provide a glimpse of home. This home is not in a house in a particular location, but it is a home prepared for all of us for eternity. No matter how comfortable we may be in our earthly homes, it truly pales in comparison to eternity with God. In that heavenly home, there is no darkness, only light. There are no tears, only joy. There is no hate, only love.

We are ambassadors for heaven by how we offer ourselves to others. Our stewardship of hospitality allows others to see a glimpse of what God promises to us. Unless we truly step up and act in a gracious manner, will those we encounter ever know the Truth? I hate it when I am on the road and fail to meet people full of joy and welcome. At least I can look forward to coming home. What do those along the way look forward to in the next life that you can’t show them a glimpse of in this one?

—Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS

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