When we regularly entertain for sit-down dinners, we often invite people to bring one course for the meal.
One family is in charge of appetizers, another the salad, and another the dessert. This leaves me responsible for the main dish, accompanying vegetables, and bread. Sometimes I ask for specific donations, such as a fresh green salad. But more likely, I just allow people to bring whatever the spirit moves them to conjure up.
A friend recently reminded me of an evening about which I had forgotten: the “bring-a-pie” night. We invited about 40.
Half of them brought marvelous home-baked delicacies. There was next to no work for me. I simply extended invitations, plugged in the coffee pot, mixed a cold fruit drink, and offered a welcome heart. I didn’t even make a pie! There was no need. The buffet table groaned from a delectable array of 20 choices.
Rule number six: Keep files.
Four file drawers filled with folders stuffed with clippings is the secret of my avowed creativity. There is an envelope for “Organizational Ideas,” for “Economy—Food,” for “Breakfasts” and “Main Dishes” and “Appetizers.” One swift glance can provide me with enough stimulation for a month of creative and systematized hospitality. These files are the only way I can justify the expense of women’s magazines.
For decades, Karen Mains 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.
Karen has long had an interest in Christian hospitality and is the author of the best-selling book, Open Heart, Open Home.
An award-winning author of several other books, Karen 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.
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.
In addition, pastors will find special resources to help them create effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.