Offer hospitality to one another . . . use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 1 Peter 4:9–10
“Kumain ka na ba?” (Have you eaten?)
This is what you’ll always hear as a visitor in many homes in the Philippines, where I’m from. It’s the Filipino way of expressing care and kindness for our guests. And regardless of your reply, your host will always prepare something for you to eat. Filipinos believe that true kindness isn’t just saying the standard greeting but also going beyond words to show real hospitality.
Rebekah too, knew all about being kind. Her daily chores included drawing water from the well outside town and carrying the heavy jar of water home. When Abraham’s servant, who was very thirsty from his journey, asked for a little water from her jar, she didn’t hesitate to give him a drink (Genesis 24:17–18).
But then Rebekah did even more. When she saw that the visitor’s camels were thirsty, she quickly offered to go back to draw more water for them (vv. 19–20). She didn’t hesitate to help, even if it meant making an extra trip (or more) to the well and back with a heavy jar.
Life is tough for many people, and often a small gesture of practical kindness can encourage them and lift their spirits. Being a channel of God’s love doesn’t always mean delivering a powerful sermon or planting a church. Sometimes, it can simply be giving someone a drink of water.
Who do you know who might need some encouragement? What act of practical kindness can you offer to encourage them?
Heavenly Father, open my eyes to the needs of people around me. Give me the wisdom to know how to show kindness and care to them.
Learn more about the stories in Genesis with Our Daily Bread University’s online course.
Some might believe that the prayer of Abraham’s servant equated to testing God (Genesis 24:12–14). But the servant was in no way trying to manipulate the Almighty. He lived in a thoroughly pagan culture that habitually sought the guidance of false gods and inanimate idols. His prayer indicates a deep abiding faith in the one true God. The servant brought the challenge facing him to God, and He honored that faith. Verse 15 states that “before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder.” Whenever we truly turn to God, He meets us where we are.