Black and purple background with a photo of two hands holding a coffee mug across a white table and white text reading: August 2022: 'The Gospel Comes with a House Key' + Easy Hospitality

August 2022: ‘The Gospel Comes with a House Key’ + Easy Hospitality

Summer’s pretty much over. Mourn if you want, but I’m stoked for the fall. But first, a look back at summer. Here’s your August 2022 recap:  

Best Book I Read This Month 

My favorite writer on Christian hospitality and reaching your community is Rosaria Butterfield. Her testimony is wild, and her writing is convicting. The Gospel Comes with a House Key was the read I needed. Find it here. 

Best Article I Read This Month

Even though it will, theoretically, relieve a burden for some right here and now, there are a LOT of problems with Biden’s student loan ‘forgiveness’ proposal. A key element not being widely discussed? The fact that the sacrifice of many is considered less difficult than living with debt. I identified greatly with this piece by my Reason colleague, Fiona Harrigan. Read it here. 

Tip + Trick of the Month

An older set of shortcuts that are all over the internet but still hold very true…

If you feel like everyone hates you, you need to sleep.

If you feel like you hate everyone, you need to eat. 

If you feel like you hate you, you need to shower. 

Pick your fighter and go forth. 

Quote of the Month

“When the whole world is running towards a cliff, he who is running in the opposite direction appears to have lost his mind.” -C.S. Lewis

Kelvey’s Thought for the Month

Want to know how to make awesome box mix brownies? Get the cheapest mix you can find (Aldi, y’all), use olive oil instead of vegetable oil while making it, and add in a few chocolate chips. They will be glorious and fudgy and make your friends go wild. 

On-hand brownie mixes are a key component of hospitality here in my house. Other components include keeping a bottle of wine and coffee around, having mood lights and candles that make everything warmer, and keeping to an easy, consistent cleaning schedule. Why are these relevant to hospitality? 

Because when someone needs to come cry on my couch or rant about their day, when someone needs a night away from their home, a few little tricks make that hospitality EASY. You can lean in and listen while treats are in the oven and not stress about feeding people or the state of your home. 

Make hospitality easy on yourself, and you’ll engage in it more. 

Enjoy the start of college football season (go Hawkeyes!). I’ll catch you next month.

Green leaves in the background with white text overlaid and a white frame around

July 2022: ‘Things That Matter’ + Resisting Consumerism

We’re more than halfway through 2022. Wild, right? Here’s your July 2022 recap: 

Best Book I Read This Month 

Many people think that minimalism is about getting rid of things until you have one lonely chair sitting in your pretty empty home. But what if minimalism was about refining your life to live on purpose? Joshua Becker explores this concept in his books. Because I’ve been reading a lot of Becker’s work, this month is a two-for-one recommendation. Find out more about Becker’s Things That Matter and The More of Less here. 

Best Article I Read This Month

Shameless self-promotion here. July played host to Shark Week! I love sharks and I love writing – read the combination of these loves here. 

Tip + Trick of the Month

July was all about minimalism on the homefront. Have an overabundance of towels and blankets that have seen better days? Don’t throw them away – take them to your local animal shelter! As someone who has volunteered for two different shelters and has a shelter pup of her own, I can testify that there is always a need for more soft things for dogs and other animals to sleep on. 

Quote of the Month

“Often, Christians ask me, ‘How can I love my neighbor without misleading her into thinking I approve of everything she does?’ First, remember that Christians cannot give good answers to bad questions. No one approves of everything that others do. No one. It is a false question. The better question is this: ‘How can my neighbors know that because I live under God’s authority rather than the compulsions of my own selfish desires, their secrets are safe with me?’ The answer is simple: love the sinner and hate your own sin. Or, as Mark says ‘Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another’ (Mark 9:50).”

-Rosaria Butterfield, The Gospel Comes with a House Key

Kelvey’s Thought for the Month

As Americans, we’re conditioned to think that more is better. That is the very heart of consumerism. But what if we start to resist that notion? 

I know I have been harping on minimalism throughout this entire monthly update, but I think regardless of how strongly/loosely you hold to such tenets, there is goodness for everyone to find here. As of late in my own life, it has been a freeing resistance to consumerism. Do you know how good it feels to walk through a store and have my brain be thinking about how happy it is to not bring unnecessary items into my home rather than wanting to buy everything? 

Something to think about. Hit the comments or the reply button if you have your own thoughts on this and, as always, I’ll catch you next month.