Guest Blogger: the Rev. Rebecca Innerst

Oranges & Apples

My grandfather had an unusual name. His name was Welcome, Welcome Knickel. He would always greet us at the door with a warm smile and a bag of candy.

You see, Grandpa drove a candy truck but put either an orange or an apple in the bag so our treat would be nutritional.

He always said, “I am welcomed at every house because they have a mat at the door with my name on it, and you are always welcome here.”

Then, he gave us a big bear hug.

The scripture for the week was written in a time when persons had to choose between faith and family or be persecuted. Fortunately, we live in a country where that is not so. For all time, Jesus reminds us:

“Whoever welcomes you, welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me, welcomes the One who sent me.”

Did you ever stop to think that when we welcome newcomers to Lakeside, God’s love is made visible?

From the smallest child to the tallest adult and everyone in between, the entire Lakeside Chautauqua staff is here to welcome. But more importantly, those who make Lakeside their year-round or summer home are called to welcome newcomers so that God’s love is made visible for everyone.

Loving God, Gracious Christ, Generous Spirit, flow through us so that the world will be filled with your love here. Amen

What does your welcome mat say at your front and back door? What ways can you help newcomers feel welcomed? How do you especially make children and youth feel Lakeside is a special place for them? Let’s chat about that on The Front Porch this week. Share your comments below.