When our sense of identity, worth, and security rests on material possessions, we discover that no matter how much we gain, it is never enough. We always find that we need just a little more to be happy. We are tempted to define enough as “always something more than I have now.” As a result, happiness and contentment elude us.
In the presence of truth, goodness, and beauty, we find ourselves inexplicably driven to voice our approval and bear witness of this approval to others. Why? Because we are homo religiosus – worshipping beings. Our positive affirmations of truth, goodness, and beauty should lead us to their true source and goal – God.
Imagine you are a teenager in a new high school on the first day of school and it is lunchtime. Who do you sit with? The jocks, cheerleaders, academics, nerds, troublemakers, or losers? These divisions do not go away when we grow up. The world continues to look like one gigantic high-school lunchroom. Radical Hospitality is God’s countercultural solution.
In a world sanctified by Christ, people, places, and things become means of grace. The world is sacramental (matter with meaning) and not merely spiritual (matter that has no meaning, but is perceived as an obstacle to true spirituality). The difference between an authentic Christian spirituality and our culture’s current craze could not be greater.