As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

{31 Days of Hospitality} Day 4 ~ People Are More Important Than Things

Not to Impress, But to Bless

If we are convinced that the purpose of hospitality is to bless, then we will esteem people more than things.   

My friend Jan taught me this lesson many years ago when I was a lunch guest in her home.  

Jan often invited fellow homeschool moms and our children over for lunch.  The children would eat quickly and then run outside to play (as children do), while the moms lingered and chatted (as moms do).  

On this particular day, my two older children were part of the play, and I was holding my six-month-old Kati over my shoulder.  I must have been engaged in the conversation, because I didn't notice that Kati's wee hand could reach the dishes on the built in shelves behind my back.  Before I knew it, that little hand had gripped a lovely old stoneware bowl and had pulled it from its perch, the bowl had fallen crashing to the floor, and it had broken into a myriad of pieces.  

The bowl was crushed...and so was I.  

I felt horrible for being negligent, for allowing my friend's treasure to be ruined.  Tears filled my eyes as I gushed apologies.

But I learned that I was treasured more than the bowl.  

Jan hushed me from repeated apologies.  She insisted that these things happen with small children.  And she calmly told me that "people are more important than things."  And she meant it.  

Baby in arms, I picked up the larger pieces, while Jan swept up the smaller ones, and we all returned to our conversations.  

I had learned a great lesson through the graciousness of my friend.  

I try to extend the same grace to guests in my home.  Because, truly, people are more important than things.  

Has anyone ever demonstrated this truth to you?  Have you shown it to another?


  1. Yes! This has been our family motto for many years...people over things!


  2. This one I have learned as well. I used to have my cherished cocoa pot on the mantle in my living room (former home) and I terrorized my children with warnings about what would happen to them if they were careless and knocked it over. The Lord did not allow me to continue that way for long before He let me know that the pot needed to go somewhere else and the children needed to be told that they were more important than any earthly treasure I could ever have. I still remember the way my son's eyes lit up.

    Soooo, did you attempt to replace the bowl?

  3. My Nana had a sign hanging in her house that said "The best things in life aren't things." I found one for my own house not too long ago!

    When I was little, I wanted to help washing dishes, and accidentally broke the bowl that Nana mixed her dumpling dough in. That bowl had a more illustrious past... there's a picture of her giving me my first bath in it when I was an newborn. (I'm sure it was disinfected between the bath and the dumplings!) Every time we made dumplings Nana told me about me taking my first bath in that bowl. It broke my heart when I broke it, but Nana just said "Honey, we can get another one. Don't cry over spilt milk."

    And I'd just like to let everyone know that no babies have been bathed in any bowls in current use at our house! :-D

  4. So true, Cheryl.
    When Chickie was little I had found some plates at a yard sale, that my grandma had had, so they held precious memories. Chickie and I called them our "summer dishes", because that's when we used them the most.
    One day she dropped and broke one and started crying. I told her that even though we liked the dishes, she was WAY more important.
    And it's true. I do try to take care of stuff, but if it breaks, it's just stuff.

  5. What a sweet and wise friend. :)


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