As far as I am concerned, etiquette is nothing more than making the other person feel at ease. In developing social graces we must cultivate that instinct for knowing where the other person is, what he or she is feeling, how we can make him or her feel at home.
We learn to notice who has not been participating in the conversation, and we find a question that will draw him or her into the circle of fellowship. We learn to hear those verbal clues to unhappiness. Or, we identify the body movement that signals someone is feeling uncertain or uncomfortable in our group.
For the Christian, “good manners” means having a Christlike mind which looks out for the interest and comfort of others before one’s own.
When we invite people into our homes, we must put away our pride, no longer seeking to impress but to serve. Whom do we invite? We look for those who are lonely. We look for those who need the loving arm of fellowship on their world-weary shoulder.
We look for the young woman recently hospitalized whose family is half a world away. Would she like to recover from surgery in a home rather than a rented room? What about those who need a place to get away for a while—a young mother with three children under four, or someone who has lost his or her job? Who needs a chance to make friends? Who needs to relax? Who needs to laugh?
Award-winning author Karen Mains continues to write content for her Christian blog, “Thoughts-by-Karen-Mains.” In so doing, she desires to touch the lives of Christian women and men and help them find ways to walk closer with the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, through silent retreats, spiritual teaching, women’s retreats, Christian vacation opportunities, and other ministry activities, Karen helps each Christian woman and man receive vital spiritual food.
Karen has long had an interest in Christian hospitality and is the author of the best-selling book, Open Heart, Open Home.
Through her Hungry Souls ministry, Karen serves as a spiritual coach to many Christian women and men, and teaches a mentor-writing class. And, through the Global Bag Project, she is working to develop a network of African women who sew exquisite cloth reusable shopping bags. This micro-finance women opportunity helps provide a much-needed sustainable income for struggling African families. For more information on this critically important project, please click here.
For decades, Karen and her husband, David, have served God through religious communications—radio, television, and print publication. The are the co-authors of the Kingdom Tales Trilogy: Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance, and Tales of the Restoration. To find many valuable resources for pastors and churches at the Mainstay Ministries main website, please click here.
Likewise, pastors will find special resources to help them prepare effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.