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We are two people, one dog and three legs...well technically ten. But this is our story about going through life with some obstacles we have to maneuver and how we go about doing just that! And by the way, our life is fewer obstacles and more awesomeness. Stay tuned for more awesomeness...

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Radical Hospitality

This month marks the second round of the Wayne County land auction of 2012.  That means, if you want to get your hands on an as-is house for $500, now's your chance.  Or you could pay slightly more and possibly get something livable.  It has become a yearly tradition for the Detroit hipsters and entrepreneurs for acquiring cheap buildings and land.  You can check out the available sites at whydontweownthis.com.  Some use this as a tool for establishing or growing their business.  Others use it as a cheap way to own a home.  Yet for others it is a really scary time as the county begins to sell their homes right out from under them because they couldn't pay their taxes.

A friend of mine bought a house last year from the land auction.  I couldn't tell you how much he paid but I have a feeling he may not have a mortgage.  But the thing is, when he bought the house it was already being lived in.  By a man who was born there and whose parents were the ones who built the house.  It had been in his family for generations but they had come upon hard times as many Detroiters have.  It's hard not to miss some tax payments when after the auto bailout many took a 50% pay cut and others were downsized.  

An amazing thing happened however, probably the best that this family could hope for in their situation.  This friend of mine who bought the house, instead of posting an eviction notice (which would be within his rights), he came and met the former owners of his new property and came to an agreement.  And a few months later, he moved in with them.

It has been about nine months that they have lived together and I don't know the details of how it is working out but man, can you imagine?  I know many who have trouble living with chosen roommates or family, let alone a total stranger that the only thing that brings you together is happenstance.  I am truly inspired by this act of hospitality.  Not only on the part of my friend but also the family that already lived in the house that agreed to take this guy on.  It will definitely be a challenge for anyone to share their most intimate places with others but as Christians and followers of Christ that is what we are called to do.

Following Christ is not the rewarding, self fulfilling picture that Joel Ostein preaches where if you believe in Jesus and are a generally pious person then you will be blessed with a big checkbook and a fancy car.  It often is sticky and really hard.  It will put you into situations where you are massively uncomfortable.  But there it is.  Jesus was a radical.  He made the powers of his day mad because he was so.

So how are you showing radical hospitality in your life?  Are you?  I could probably use some work in this area and I know that the friend I am referring to in this blog is doing a much better job.  I guess  that is why I wanted to mention it because it is an example of something we can all strive towards.  Not that we all need to buy a house on the auction and move into a house that is already lived in but it gives you an idea of what a picture of hospitality really looks like.  

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