We are excited to introduce you to one of our partners, Gina Mueller of 3DM. Gina has become a quick friend and colleague in our work. We deeply appreciate her vision, energy and compassion for people. This post was originally posted on June 3, 2021 on their blog.
Learning from Jesus, there’s something supernatural that happens around the table. As spring and summer get underway and the world starts gathering again, I thought I’d share a few practical tips we have learned over the years on how we live a gathering lifestyle in a way that doesn’t wear us out.
PS – 100% of our family are introverts, so if you’re wondering how that works, check out the webinar I did a while back called “Introverts on Mission!”
A key value for us is LIGHTWEIGHT, LOW MAINTENANCE. Everything has to be sustainable over the long haul. We make an intentional choice to create a family culture in our home where everyone contributes, rather than an entertaining culture where I do everything.
I promised practical, so I’ll share what we do and you can adjust to what works for your family!
I always do potluck. Always. When people bring something and contribute to the meal, it makes them feel a part of things rather than provided for. I don’t micromanage what people bring. Whatever shows up is what we eat!
I love using a 3-gallon drink dispenser when we have large groups in our home, even if just for water. Kids can pour their own drink and it frees me up to focus on people rather than refilling small pitchers.
I have thrifted and hunted down clearance items over time to pick up a couple extra sets of dishes, so my kitchen cabinets can feed 25+ people at a time. It’s a bit of a missional investment but has definitely paid off over time! I also keep a closet shelf stocked with paper plates and plastic silverware at all times so I don’t have to think about it. If we’re in a pinch or there’s a last-minute opportunity to create community, I’m set.
In our house, people don’t stay guests, they become family. That means I invite people to rummage through my kitchen to find what they need, I give them full refrigerator rights to help themselves, and I invite help at the end of the meal to clean up. Sustainability, friends! This is what makes regular rhythms possible…and fun!
What tips do you have to make having people in your home regularly sustainable? If inviting people in regularly is new for you and you are hesitant to do so, my encouragement is to name the barriers. What feels scary? What feels overwhelming? What is giving you pause?
Name it. Rather than allowing that thing to keep you from inviting people of peace into your home, find a way to make it work for you!