I have a welcome mat on my front porch. Most of us do. We like to think we are welcoming people. But are we? Really?

I asked my 12 year old what she thought about when she heard the word “welcome”.

“I think you’re supposed to be happy when you welcome someone,” she said.

I’m guilty of not always being happy when I welcome or receive someone. I’m sometimes guilty of welcoming only those I feel comfortable welcoming. Or those that are most like me. I shy away from inviting those with more into my home. More money, more house, more education. Those that appear to have it more together, or……….more anything.

And those with less……..the same.

I have to be intentional about welcoming all kinds into my home. Into my conversation. Into my world. But I get so comfortable in my space. In my home with my people. In the office with my co-workers. Within my circle of friends.

My comfort is not what God had in mind when he inspired Paul to write to the Romans: Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. (15:7)

Welcome. Invite. Receive. Accept.

Joyfully.

The poor should invite the rich. And the rich the poor. The strong receive the weak and the weak the strong. Those less mature in the faith should receive those more mature, and vice versa. Those living in freedom bring in those dying in bondage and those in bondage welcome the free.

Jesus welcomed all. He asks us to do the same.

So reach out and welcome one another to God’s glory. Jesus did it; now you do it!
Romans 15:7 (MSG)