Pursuing Hospitality: What If I Am Single?


What about those young men or women who are not married? Can they still practice hospitality? The answer to this is , yes and they must. The command in Romans 12:13 is to all Christians, not just the married. However, there are can be some difficulties practicing hospitality when you are not married. Let me give a few bits of advice for those who are single. Much of this could also apply to couples who are limited in their space.

First, for young women and men still living at home. Make sure you are actively engaged in helping your parents with their hospitality. Do not stand by and let your parents do all the work. Do not assume that since you are now eighteen and work a full time job you have no part in your parent’s hospitality. If you cannot serve your parents while at home it will be difficult to serve others when you have your own home.

Second, if you live on your own you will have to think outside the box when it comes to hospitality. Most singles (and young couples) do not have room at their home/apartment to entertain a family.  To fulfill this command they are going to have to do things differently. You could offer to bring a meal to a family’s house and eat it with them. Most families would love this. Don’t be afraid to get a bucket of chicken or pizzas either. Remember hospitality is not about impressing people, but serving them. If you are single, you could take a couple or family out to a restaurant for a meal. During the summer you could meet a family at a park and grill for them. When you are invited over to a home bring food and/or drink. If you have the space, you could invite over all the members of a family that are your sex. For example, a young man could invite a father and his sons for dinner and games. As a single person your hospitality will look different from that of families. And normally you will be the recipient of a lot of hospitality. But do not be afraid to take initiative. It might feel awkward initially, but you will learn and families will appreciate it.

Third, watch hospitality in action. When you are invited to a home, observe and take mental notes about how things are done. Learn from the families around you so that you are ready to fill their shoes when the time comes.

Fourth, do not forget singles of the same sex. If you are a young man, invite young men to your home or apartment. If you are a lady, living on your own or with a roommate, invite other ladies in. You can cook them a meal or order pizza. Of course, singles love to go out and eat. That is a great way to get to know one another, especially in mixed company.  But having people in your home or apartment is better preparation for hospitality. Just because you are single does not mean you cannot do hospitality.

Finally, for those of us who have families we need to make sure were include single men and women, as well as young couples, in our hospitality. We will learn from them. They will learn from us as well.

2 thoughts on “Pursuing Hospitality: What If I Am Single?

  1. What does hospitality do in the modern world? I mean you read stories in the Old Testament where a traveler comes from another town and tries to sleep in the street because its late at night. So, some old man comes out and says “Come stay in my house! It's not safe out here!” Of course it turns out it isn't any safer in this guy's house in the two stories I have in mind. One is about Sodom and Gomorrah and the other about the Levite whose concubine is raped to death even after he takes shelter in this guy's house. Hospitality didn't do him much good. But in the modern world, where we have hotels and can roll into town at 3 in the morning and get a room no problem, its just not like the ancient world. Kinda like feet washing. You didn't walk on your journey and don't really need your feet washed. So why are you Calvinists being so legalistic on hospitality?

    “What about those young men or women who are not married? Can they still practice hospitality? The answer to this is clear. Yes and they **must**.”

    There actually is no direct command “Thou shalt be hospitable” like their is “Thou shalt not commit adultery” which you Calvinists freely ignore. Rather Paul just says “Be not forgetful to lodge strangers for some have lodged angels unawares.” Maybe you aren't forgetful but you don't see how it makes sense in the modern world with its hotels and such. And if you're single, especially a single white female, you don't see why you should put yourself in danger of rape to follow an antiquated practice that serves no purpose in the modern world.

    –Rey Beowulf Jacobs
    That's my name. Don't wear it out.


  2. Of course, due I suppose to awkward old english in the KJV you think that when it says “entertain” strangers it means invite them over to play Xbox, I suppose.

    –Rey Beowulf Jacobs
    That's my name. Don't wear it out.


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