A Story about Neighborly Hospitality

Two days of constant snowfall and freezing temperature made for a frigid wintery weekend. The neighbor was overwhelmed of the snowfall. As he continued to shovel his way out, his neighbor, Joshua, walked over to assist him. With much surprise, the neighbor looked up and said, “Thank you for helping me.”  Joshua replied, “I don’t mind, we’ve met before, but I don’t remember your name.”  The neighbor introduced himself as Bill. “ I’m Joshua, but everybody calls me Josh” Joshua said.

They continued to shovel and talk about the weather until they were finished. “Whew! That was a lot of snow we shoveled!” Bill said with an exhausted look on his face as he propped  his shovel in a mound of snow.  “It was a great workout while there’s sunlight!” replied Joshua. “Thank you again, but really, why did you choose to help me with shoveling my driveway and not finish the rest of your driveway?” Bill was still puzzled and wanted an explanation from Joshua. The only contact that they’ve had was a simple hand gesture by waving to each other while getting their mail out of the mailbox. Joshua replied with a smile, while shaking the snow off of his snow pants and boots, “It’s the neighborly thing to do sir. I really didn’t mind at all. Besides, my family and I will get outside in the morning and take care of our driveway since the little ones want to play in the snow and make snowmen tomorrow.”

As Joshua walked into his home, he remembered that he wanted to practice a scripture he read that morning. It was from 1 Peter 4:9-10 that says, “Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”  Quietly he thanked God for the courage and opportunity to open up his heart to show hospitality towards his neighbor Bill.

Contributed by Joe Starling, Spiritual Life Coordinator, Heritage Christian Services, Inc.

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