The Lord appeared to Abraham near the great trees of Mamre while he was sitting at the entrance to his tent in the heat of the day. Abraham looked up and saw three men standing nearby. When he saw them, he hurried from the entrance of his tent to meet them and bowed low to the ground. . . He said, “Let me get you something to eat, so you can be refreshed, and then go on your way,” -Genesis 18:1-5
You ever noticed that once you’ve been through something, you are much more open-hearted towards those going through similar circumstances? Parents who are frequent fliers at children’s hospitals reach out to new parents learning those ropes with their sick children. People who have been sober for some time encourage others who are just beginning the battle for sobriety. Neighbors who remember moving into the neighborhood years ago go by and greet a brand new family moving in.
This is what is happening with Abraham. He’s been journeying for some time now with God. He knows the difference others’ hospitality has meant to him. And when he sees three weary travelers coming by in the heat of the day, he presents himself to them as their servant, ready to make their journey just a touch easier.
It turns out, if you read along, that they turn out to be the very God of all creation, in disguise (see verse 10). So it is when we reach out to care for others with open hearts.
Let me see where I can serve someone who has been where I’ve been. Rather than seeing my past as a burden, O God, let me see my experiences as a way to open my heart to others who may need You as seen through me. Amen.
Name something you have overcome in your past. Find a way to encourage someone today who is going through that very thing.
Act out this story! Someone be Abraham and everyone else be the guests.