Date Nights

Last night was the second date in my 52 week challenge. Check it out the date here at Romance on a Shoestring. While getting stuff ready for the date, I decided that I would make a little date for them too. They loved the idea. So each date that Danny and I have, they have a little date too. It will work out well since they help me set up the table, I can make a little extra for them. To keep costs down for our dates, I decided that I will cook the same dinner for us and the kids, we will just eat at different times. Yesterday’s date night worked out perfectly!

Our date was office themed, so I carried that over to the kids. They got paper airplanes, and a post it note with an encouraging note on it! They thought it was so much fun eating out of containers and off paper plates. You’d think they died and gone to heaven when they each got to eat a fancy cake.

A couple years ago, I read the book Practicing Hospitality by Pat Ennis and Lisa Tatlock. One of the chapters talks about showing hospitality to your family. It’s easy to get wrapped up in showing hospitality to others to the neglect of your own family.

If the Lord has given us a family, extending hospitality to our family is our first priority. Once we have established the ministry of hospitality within our family, we can include extended family members, friends, strangers, the needy, and the poor. Hospitality towards others then becomes a natural outworking or extension of what we are already practicing within our homes. p.74

Neglecting to extend hospitality to our family can discredit our witness. The testimony of a wife and mom who loves and serves her family is a powerful witness to a watching world; it is also something that separates a believing woman from the world. The manner in which we serve and love our family should reflect the transforming power of the gospel in our own life (2 Cor. 4:17-21). In other words, our love, dedication, and other biblical character attributes manifested toward our family are a testimony to the world of God’s powerful work in our lives. p75

Treat your family “as good as guests.” Often we treat our guests better than our family. Establishing the habit of treating our family as we would a guest will assist us in communicating our love to our family. Extending hospitality to our family allows them to reap the same blessings our guests receive in our home. Also, modeling for our children how to honor guests– they learn by example. Treating our family as guests also reinforces the concept of family first. p80

I asked Bentley, “Why do Mommy and Daddy have dates?”

Bentley said, “Because you love each other. And we (Bentley and Marseille) have dates because we love each other!

I’m not adding this on to my plate out of being fair or guilt. Because Mommy and Daddy are having dates, the kids need a date too. I’m doing it to show them hospitality and hopefully giving them an example of creativity and love. The kids enjoy helping me set up, what Bentley calls, “date nights on the table” for Danny. They think it’s so special eating at the counter by themselves for dinner. The point of date nights is relationship and memories, so I’m more than happy to spend a little extra time setting up a date for them.

Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her; “Many woman have done excellently, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates. – Proverbs 31:28-31

Hospitality looks different for every family! Don’t compare! Just love on your family with your talents! They will reap the fruit of your hands and your love!

xo, nikki :)

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