Being in a hospitable relationship with God is the first step toward being able to offer hospitality to ourselves – and vice versa!
Welcoming Jesus – while also accepting Jesus’s welcome of us – leads us to practice honesty, acceptance and kindness to ourselves.
It leads us to love ourselves, as Jesus himself commanded in Matthew 22.
Care for self is why Holy Leisure is part of St. Benedict’s Rule. We are to give ourselves prayerful, restorative quiet and activities that revitalize us.
We are, in other words, to give ourselves ‘me’ time.
It’s neither easy nor optional.
“Hospitality to self is a challenge,” Sr. Stefanie MacDonald says.
“It means giving ourselves what we need in order to be who we are. It means accepting ourselves fully. We’re not always good at that. I know that my alone time helps me be centered and balanced and able to give myself to others.”
Sister Helen Carey, OSB says by accepting your own hospitality to yourself you gain much to give.
“The practice of hospitality to self means that I can be at home with who I am as well as with who others are,” she says.
“It allows me to practice peace, hope and comfort.”
Welcoming God in all means welcoming God in ourselves as well. When we do that, we are replenished and nourished, and can welcome God in all, all over again. It’s a wonderful cycle!