Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. -Hebrews 13:2
Recently, I was scrolling through Facebook, as one does when seeking out the latest news on high school friends you haven’t seen in decades. Swiping through post after post with the flick of a finger, one of the many anecdotal ‘news’ posts offering lighthearted entertainment caught my attention. I’m glad it did.
The author recounts a flight experience that took place on a crowded airplane and began with a young child introducing herself to her new in-flight neighbor – an adult she did not yet know. Fretting parents, put your minds at ease, the child’s parents were just a row or two ahead on the crowded flight. The child introduced herself by letting her new adult friend know that as a young child she was prone to sharing random thoughts aloud without warning, so her new friend should be prepared. The flight continued and as promised, the young child shared one-liner after one-liner with her new friend. The timing, insight, and humor of the remarks had such an impact on the adult passenger that she was compelled to share on her social media. And the story had me laughing out loud!
At the end of all the humorous remarks came a heartwarming word of gratitude from the young girl. She said she was glad that the two got to enjoy the flight together and thanked her new friend for listening to all her observations. Turns out, their time together was a gift to both.
How do we, as individuals and the church, create space for people to simply be the people God created them to be? To share their story? Their observations?
Of course, the story was followed by a plethora of remarks and comments, most of which were reflections of memorable travel experiences. One comment really struck me. A reader shared that on her first flight as a child without parents present, full of nerves and anxiety, the adult passenger next to her shared her Rolo candies. She told that now, decades later, every time she eats a Rolo she thinks of that person. One simple act of kindness. A lifetime of impact.
We gather as the church because Jesus Christ has had an impact on our lives. How are we, as individuals and the church, having an impact on others?
May FPCV always be a welcoming community that seeks to have a positive impact on those we meet! You just never know when you might be entertaining an angel!