When explaining to my non-Spanish speaking children that 'bien' means 'well' or 'good' and that 'venidos' is a form of the verb 'venir' or 'to come,' I told them that 'Bienvenidos' is a way to say to those who come through our front door, 'We wish you well as you're coming into our home.'
Later I began to think about this learning curve we're in as a family: committing to a whole new level of hospitality that includes being a safe haven for each other, allowing each other to be powerful and free (no control, bc that's not how God loves us AT ALL-- He's ALL ABOUT free will), keeping our love ON/managing our behavior in such a way that we self govern/adjust our choices to where we extend care, compassion, and grace towards the weaknesses we're discovering (in ourselves AND in others).
I was tempted to turn my love off today when I was feeling overwhelmed with fear and pain. I asked Papa how to be 'Bienvenidos' about the people and circumstances that were scaring/hurting me, and Holy Spirit began singing a Christmas carol over me. He's so freaking FUN to reveal the bottom line of true hospitality in this festive, creative way:
Take a load off, Graham Cooke says.
The classic holiday lyrics actually say 'GOD REST YOU,' which is a totally different concept.
1. The gentle, humble, joyful heart of Jesus resides in me, and
2. Therefore, bc He imputes to me Christ's righteousness, I AM CAPABLE OF BEING MATURE enough to return to joy from every negative, fear based emotion; I'm also led by His Spirit to exactly which resources He's provided in every situation, to assist me in my commitment to de-funk.
LET NOTHING YOU DISMAY
To be trustworthy as one who's hospitable (in ways that aren't just about beautiful decor and matching dishes) it's critical to be an encourager and not a naysayer or a downer, I've had to learn the hard way... to hold each other's hands up, bc doing life is full of deplenishing experiences, and we need the 'one anothers' to get the joy centers of our brains firing again, so we can see clearly the destiny we're called to get back on the rails of.
I heard Him singing about saving us all from Satan's power when we have gone astray... Wow. That's what being a safe person looks like.
At the end, I heard the Lord singing over and over the true heart of 'Bienvenidos':
OH TIDINGS OF COMFORT AND JOY
COMFORT AND JOY
OH TIDINGS OF COMFORT AND JOY
Jesus, teach me to be more than Martha Stewart-esque in my understanding of how to make YOU famous for being THIS kind of spiritually and emotionally nourishing hospitality through us. We want the culture we're building in this home to be a little more about warmth and refuge each day, and a little less about people joining forces with the enemy against each other.
Holy Spirit, you are bienvenidos here, come flood this place and fill the atmosphere. Your glory, God, is what our hearts long for, to be overcome by Your presence, Lord.