“And let us consider how to spur one another on to love and good deeds. Let us not neglect meeting together, as some have made a habit, but let us encourage one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10:24-25
My sweet next-door neighbor is getting new front doors. It’s so interesting how a front door can make a house, like the right pair of shoes complete an outfit. Interestingly enough, my house doesn’t have a front door. It has two side doors on opposite sides of the house. People come in both the “front” door and the kitchen door. Neither of these doors are visible from the street, so I’ve never paid much attention to their aesthetics.
Since my neighbor is looking for new front doors, I’ve become increasingly aware of the doors on other houses in our neighborhood. There are the old ones with the fancy etched glass, the red-painted ones, the window light doors, and the big iron ones. They are all pretty in their own right and have been carefully planned out to go with the overall architectural style of the house.
However, the most beautiful door to me ironically is not a door at all. Nothing makes a house warmer and more hospitable than an open door. Nothing says, “Come in,” quite like an open door! If you’ve ever had to sell Girl Scout cookies, popcorn, or wrapping paper you know just how intimidating a closed door can be. But, when it’s opened by a gracious and loving host who greets you with a warm smile, your fears subside.
Friends, these unprecedented times we find ourselves in can be both chaotic and extremely lonely. Everyone is zooming, zooming, zooming! If you’re not zooming for a meeting you are probably helping your children zoom with their teachers or even actually zooming them to soccer practice after “remote school.”
Wouldn’t it be nice to sit with a friend or two and have a real conversation, face to face over a cup of coffee, a glass of iced tea or wine?
Considering the global pandemic, I don’t know how or when Sweet Monday will continue in its “usual” way with monthly gatherings in homes around the country. But, I would like to take this golden opportunity to invite you to participate in Sweet Monday’s OPEN DOOR CHALLENGE. We all have neighbors and friends who are probably feeling the isolating effects of this health crisis as much as we are. Maybe you have never been to a Sweet Monday before, but in the true spirit of a Sweet Monday Hostess, you too can invite a friend or neighbor over to your home.
Hospitality is an open door. Keep it so simple you don’t dread it. Whether you have sweets or not is your choice. No theme is necessary, and it doesn’t even have to be on a Monday. Just a warm welcome and encouraging conversation. Ask them how they’ve been? How is their family? Reconnect on a deeper level and let them know you care. Share the love of Christ by sharing your home with someone this month. Listen with both your ears and your heart. Ask questions that allow your guest to open up and share their lives with you, then let the Holy Spirit do His work. The longer you listen, the more you gain the authority to speak.
Our vision at Sweet Monday is to create opportunities for women to connect with each other and with Christ. Here’s your opportunity – one sweet invitation at a time! If your friend has an open heart, share God’s word with them. If not, simply share His love by serving and listening. If they are hurting or have a physical need, ask how you can help.
If you would like more ideas, Sweet Monday is here to help you. One of my favorite verses which is so comforting in today’s caustic environment is John 16:33:
Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble, but TAKE HEART! I have overcome the world.”
Open your heart, open your home, and open your door. It’s a sweet challenge that will have an eternal impact.
Post pictures to our social media pages on Instagram and Facebook and tag @SweetMondaySocials and #theOpenDoorChallenge. Let’s make the most of this opportunity of social distancing and gathering limitations and reach our hurting world with the love of Christ, one sweet invitation at a time.