Hospitality Hints is a monthly feature on our blog with some helpful tips for being hospitable in everyday life. Our hints may involve inviting people over, but not always! Most of the time, they will be about having a posture of hospitality—welcoming others into our lives.
December is here—one of the most magical, but potentially stressful, times of year. My guess is that your holiday traditions have already started. Trees have been decorated, baking has started, and the list of parties and gifts to buy is still growing. While I love all of the fun, holiday events, one of the hardest things can be keeping my perspective set on Christ and His coming.
I’m a planner at heart, and December more than any month is a time when I’ve got to really be intentional to plan for the important things. Ultimately I want my holiday season to be about really loving on people—friends, family, and strangers—to share the hope that I have because Christ came in a manager so many years ago.
Before you panic about the idea of doing more, let’s talk a few ways to care for others on the go this December. It might be easier than you think. 🙂
- Love to bake? Snag an extra box of brownie mix during your weekly grocery trip and bake up a batch for your office. We can all use that little boost of sugar to brighten our day at the office. Not to mention, your coworkers really will appreciate that you took extra time to think of them.
- Let someone in front of you in line. When we step back, it’s crazy that we don’t do this more often. Even if we feel like we are in a hurry (aren’t we always?), letting one person in front of you in line will only cost you a few minutes, but will brighten a stranger’s day.
- Donate to a local food bank. This can be as simple as grabbing a few canned goods while you’re already at the store. Several grocery store chains also have pre-filled bags of goods that you can simply purchase at checkout and donate. So easy! If you’re in the Nashville area, Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee has a list of stores in the area doing just that!
- Buy Starbucks for the next person in line. If you’ve ever been on the receiving end of this, you know that this small act can make someone’s day. You never know what the next person in line is going through, and this small act of kindness could mean the world.
- Check out our fun gift guide to save you time on your holiday shopping. Purchase a Sweet Grace candle, and a portion of the proceeds goes towards feeding a child in international orphanages. Purchase and donate a $5 Christmas plush toy at your local LifeWay store, and get it into the hands of a local ministry, children’s home, or hospital. Plush donations are being collected in store through the week before Christmas, so it’s any easy way to give while doing your holiday shopping!
Giving back during the holiday season doesn’t mean stopping all of your holiday traditions; it means being intentional with those traditions and finding ways to integrate a spirit of giving and purpose during the busy weeks of December.
These are just a few ways to add a little hospitality to your holiday season. What other ways do you love to give on the go? Tell us about them in the comments below!
Jessica Yentzer is a digital specialist and community manager on LifeWay’s Adult Ministry team. Well-written memoirs, dark chocolate, a good running trail, and the perfect, fall day are just a few of the things that put a smile on her face. When she’s not planning editorial calendars or writing, she loves hiking and exploring the outdoors with her husband, Grant.