Rebels choose wholeness over division.
Rebels prize the best self over the self created for a transactional and coercive environment.
I long to hold a space where Hospitality (with a capital H) can cultivate that choice, particularly in the hospitality (lower case h) industry. It’s about bringing something transformational into a transactional context. It grows out of a desire to be our best selves: a wholeness born of all that we are.
When Hospitality is genuinely cultivated, it must be offered to all. In the hospitality industry, that means that before anyone else, Hospitality is first offered to those who provide goods and services, then to those who consume them.
And here’s the rebel part: the grace of Hospitality is only real when it’s freely offered to everyone. It’s not a transaction or a quid pro quo. As Henri Nouwen wrote, “Hospitality … means primarily the creation of a free space where the stranger can enter and become a friend instead of an enemy.”
How many times have service providers seemed like enemies to their employers rather than friends? Where is that “free space” and how can we hold it for everyone?
Hospitality seeks to transform destructive relationships out of its pure generosity of spirit. It is not a transaction. It is a grace.
And like all creative forces, Hospitality is a rebel.
IMAGE: Spanish fresco showing pilgrims receiving hospitality on the road to Compostela, 13th century (source: reddit)