A Time to Change Plans

Yesterday afternoon I wrote a blurb for the back cover of my new book on hospitality, COME, LORD JESUS, BE OUR GUEST. I plan to submit my edited manuscript along with cover suggestions to my publisher, Inspiring Voices (a division of GUIDEPOSTS) this afternoon. I’m pretty excited. This is the book I’ve been working on for more than three years. Here’s what I drafted for the back cover:

“Come, Lord Jesus, be our guest.” And he came – as a homeless man, a stranger, a friend.

Marian Korth and her partner Mim Jacobson have served breakfast to thousands of overnight guests in their home, but they didn’t bother to offer a cup of coffee to a homeless man huddling on their doorstep one cold winter morning. Why didn’t they welcome this “Jesus” into their home?

Marian still has more to learn about hospitality, although she’s had more than 60 years of adventures in hospitality already. She can tell stories about being hospitable (or not) from:

    • Growing up on a farm
    • Living in Chicago
    • Turning their home into a bed and breakfast
    • Caring for people in their home as they are dying
    • Running their home as a spiritual retreat center

Kindness is the common thread that runs through all these adventures in hospitality. The first verse Marian memorized as a child was Ephesians 4:32, “Be ye kind, one to another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.” (She memorized it and still thinks about it in the King James Version.)

In these stories, Marian reflects on what God is telling her about living a life of hospitality. She thinks it’s pretty exciting to know that God has told us, “Be ready with a meal or a bed when it’s needed. Why, some have extended hospitality to angels without ever knowing it!” (Hebrews 13:2 The Message)

I’ll let you know when the book is available. I expect to hold it in my hands by summer, maybe earlier.

My first book, LISTENING FOR GOD: 52 REFLECTIONS ON EVERYDAY LIFE, is already available. The back cover blurb for that book begins,

Discover how God talks to us through everyday happenings.

    • One day, God tells us to hold our to-do lists lightly. There are more important things for today.
    • Another day, God’s message is to think a little harder about how we spend our money.
    • Some days, God just says to relax and enjoy the beauty of the earth…

The first bullet point on this cover certainly fits today’s to-do list for me. I had planned to write about a conversation I had with my dog, Abbey, for this morning’s blog post. I was going to talk about sometimes being too busy to take long walks, and the wisdom (or lack thereof) in that. Instead I spent time talking with my nephew about why people commit suicide. A friend of his killed himself yesterday.

On Mim’s recommendation, I’ve ordered a couple copies of the book, ANDREW, YOU DIED TOO SOON, by Corinne Chilstrom – one for my nephew and one for me. Mim says it’s an excellent book on suicide. Chilstrom is a Lutheran pastor and nurse whose son committed suicide.

Today’s revised to-do list makes time for listening. Maybe next week, I’ll have time to share the conversation between Abbey and me about being too busy… I might even offer my own paraphrase of Hebrews 13:2 – “Be ready with a meal or a bed or a listening ear when it’s needed…”

Abbey-Marian

Note:  If you want more information about either of my books, check out my author website, www.MarianKorth.com.

One thought on “A Time to Change Plans

  1. What a difficult topic for conversation you had with your nephew! One never knows who God will send your way – am so glad you could and can be there for him. Thank you, God, for someone who listens!

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