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Campus Blog

Defining hospitality

May 9th, 2012 | Lauren Simms


I’m sitting here staring at the date on my calendar thinking, “how in the world is it already May?” Between turning in projects, making speeches, studying for finals, and then taking the exams, somehow April disappeared without saying goodbye. My last final was last Thursday. Afterwards, I walked to my car all but shouting “Hallelujah!!” to the half-empty parking lot. I enjoyed my four-day weekend and started online summer school yesterday. Yes, still being in school stinks; however, I get to write papers and listen to narrated PowerPoints from the comfort of my own home (in my PJ’s).

One of my classes is a Special Topics course on the Communication of Hospitality. Since it started yesterday, we are still in the beginning stage of exploring what hospitality actually is. In my research, I have found that the web holds many different definitions. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as “a treatment, reception, or a disposition.” Dictionary.com defines it as, “the friendly reception and treatment of guests or strangers.” Last, the MacMillan Dictionary defines it as, “food, drink, and entertainment given to customers by a company or organization.”

My definition of hospitality is simply this: “to serve others in a way that makes them feel respected and welcome, wherever whenever.” Hospitality is mentioned several times in the Bible. Hebrews 13:2 states, “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unaware.” I think that as humans we sometimes forget how much of a privilege it is to be able to serve others. God specifically states in Titus 1:8, “Be hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined.”

Hospitality is more than offering special treatments to guests or strangers; it is showing the love of Christ through our actions and our words. The root of hospitality roots in Colossians 3:23-24, “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Jesus Christ.”

So, as I diligently “work heartily” during summer school, I am starting to gain knowledge and learn new material. Who knows? I might even wind up enjoying it.

 

Lauren Simms

Communication Studies Major | Class of 2013

Lauren, a Communication Studies major, is a commuter student from Springfield, Missouri. She is a work-study for Marketing Enrollment, a member of a START team, and an EU Student Host. She encourages students to study hard, get involved and enjoy every minute.

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