Finding Your Own Style of Hospitality (Guest Post by Lifegiving Author Tammy Maltby)
FAITH BARISTA'S BLOG ANNIVERSARY IS HERE ! ** LIFEGIVING BOOK GIVEAWAY ** To celebrate, I'm giving away a book that has been inspirational to me. This faith-encouraging book by Tammy Maltby is about living a beautiful life. Enter the Lifegiving Book Giveway At The End Of Today's Post ! * Congratulations to By Grace Alone Giveaway winner #114 - Jeri T.*
Today, I have a treat for us.
A special friend who has encouraged me in my faith journey is here to help celebrate the blog’s anniversary.
That’s right. Speaker, author, and media personality, Tammy Maltby from The Lifegiving Woman, is in the house as guest barista!
I first met Tammy through her faith-inspiring book Lifegiving: Discovering Secrets to a Beautiful Life.
I was feeling drained and discouraged. Why did God put all these passions in me, without the opportunity to fulfill them?
I was a thirty-something mom, touting a three-year-old and newborn boys, encountering a crisis of faith. Tammy’s book reminded me I already had what I needed to be lifegiving: my faith. She got me brainstorming.
How can I express God’s unique lifegiving ways in me — my personality, quirkiness, things I loved and things I didn’t — right where I’m at now?
One of them was writing. Another was hospitality.
Now, before you think I’m Miss Martha Stewart wanna-be, lemme stop and allow Tammy to share her encouragement on hospitality.
As you read her words, don’t just limit hospitality to food.
Hospitality to me also meant words and writing. It was one of the inspirations behind Faith Barista. I wanted to create a welcoming place where your journey of faith is valued and celebrated.
To you, hospitality can mean something else.
God’s lifegiving expression… Uniquely yours…
Okay. Enough talking by me.
Tammy, thank you for being here to serve up a special faith brew.
My friend Lynn Brown is one of most hospitable women I know.
She entertains frequently, hosts Bible studies in her home, and is always inviting someone over for a snack. Her motto is “have a cookie, make a friend.” She and her husband often open their home to young women who need special nurturing. I’ve seen so many lives transformed through Lynn’s ministry of hospitality.
But it almost didn’t happen.
In fact, when I first met Lynn she was totally intimidated by the very idea of hospitality. Lynn knew I loved cooking, hosting dinners and having people over to our home. She couldn’t imagine herself doing anything remotely like that. The bottom line is she didn’t like to cook, she didn’t know how to cook and she quite simply she saw no reason why she should. She was a wife mother and worked at a demanding job often requiring her to travel. So she just assumed she was disqualified from hospitality. It just wasn’t her.
But a turning point for Lynn happened when I was having a particularly bad day.
My husband was out of town. My four little kids were underfoot. And I’d spent the entire morning trying to clean up from a major flood that happened in our home. I was a wreck—no makeup, dirty clothes, hair pulled back haphazardly. And I happened to run into Lynn in the alleyway between our houses.
In that moment, Lynn’s truly hospitable heart managed to reach past her insecurities to see my need.
She took one look at me and said, “Why don’t you and the kids come over for tuna-fish sandwiches?”
We did. In the midst of eating simple tuna sandwiches, we laughed, told stories and had a wonderful time. By the time that lunch was over I felt strengthened to tackle my home disasters once again. What an encouragement she was to me. And something clicked too in Lynn’s mind that day, or so she told me later.
She realized: “I can do this. I just need to do hospitality my own way…my own style. I need to be intentional about this.”
That was just the beginning of Lynn’s uniquely beautiful ministry of hospitality almost 15 years ago. And you know what? Lynn still can’t cook. (She will even tell you that!) The cookies she shares are bought from the local Walmart. She’s found great sources of carry-out food for her dinners and Bible studies. And she feeds the young women she mentors the same way she feeds her family—with just “doctor it up dinners” and store bought salads and peach iced tea.
Lynn’s style of hospitality couldn’t be more different than mine. But she found her unique niche and it transformed her life and the lives of all the people she ministers to.
Because when it comes to practicing hospitality, yours doesn’t have to look anything like mine—or Lynn’s.
Your hospitality shouldn’t look like anyone else’s. Hospitality really means loving others with your life.
Everything You Are
Loving others with your life means —
• Your cracked dishes
• Your dramatic flair
• Your dinky apartment
• Your fabulous chili
• Your shyness and introversion
• Your soft spot for teenagers or senior citizens or singles or college students
• Your organizational challenges
• Your impossible schedule
• Your grubby kitchen floor
• Your Oriental rugs
• Your geriatric poodle and overly affectionate cats
• Your knack for decorating
• Your offbeat sense of humor
• Your tendency to run late
• Your perfectionist tendencies
• Your late paycheck
• Your unruly toddlers or sullen teens…or empty nest
Everything you are—your personality, your resources, your circumstances, your talents and spiritual gifts, even your particular failings and challenges—can be used by God to do his kingdom work of hospitality.
Remember hospitality is a message you give others about their value. It is not about impressing someone but rather providing comfort and care.
Practicing hospitality is learning, like my friend, to take advantage of your own particular style of serving and in doing so, enrich someone else’s life as well as your own.
How do you feel about hospitality?
Tammy loves company and she is here virtually, reading comments and replying to questions.
Psst… A Special Cake Recipe From Tammy
Tammy is a gracious friend. She’s posted a delicious easy recipe: The Maltby Cake, customized for us! Click for the recipe.
Be sure to visit Tammy –
Her blog: The Lifegiving Woman
Her Books: Tammy’s newest book, The God Who Sees will be released Spring 2012. Her other titles include The Christmas Kitchen: A Gathering Place for Making Memories, Confessions of a Good Christian Girl, Lifegiving, A Discovery Journal to a Beautiful Life and Confessions of a Good Christian Guy.
Tammy Maltby is a speaker, author, Bible teacher, media personality, and Co-Creator of It’s a Good Life. Tammy is the mother of four grown children, two of whom are adopted internationally and a happy grandmother to Cohen. She lives in Colorado with her husband.
** Lifegiving Book Giveaway **
Let’s continue to celebrate Faith Barist’a blog anniversary! In honor of the lifegiving community here, I’m giving away Lifegiving: Discovering the Secrets to a Beautiful Life to TWO (2) RANDOMLY SELECTED WINNERS.
1. Share a comment or blog post by Midnight Wed 8/17/11.
For Extra Entries:
2. Subscribe to Faith Barista and leave an extra comment letting me know.
3. Share this post on Facebook or Twitter (Click the “Share/Save” button below) and leave an extra comment letting me know.
*** NOW, IT’S YOUR TURN — FAITH BARISTA JAM! ***
Faith Barista Jam Thursdays – I serve up a topic of faith, you write the post. Let’s encourage each other. Add your voice. Swap our stories.
This Thursday’s Topic 8/11: The gift of hospitality.
Share your post by clicking on the blue button below “Add Your Link” or just comment directly.
Next Thurday’s Topic 8/18: Small acts of faith.
Approach it any way you feel inspired!
Only required ingredient: keep it real. Thanks for serving your personal brews!
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It’s a jam session. As time allows, say hi & drop a comment when visiting the community faith blends!