Once in awhile I’ll sit and work at the bar of a restaurant during lunch or happy hour. Today was one of those todays, and I was sitting in the outside patio-bar of a large restaurant on the beach.
There was a strange man sitting near me, nursing a margarita and chatting up the bartender on both sides of the hour I was there. Occasionally, he got on his phone and his voice changed to be more serious, business-like, but I didn’t eavesdrop.
He didn’t talk to me and I didn’t talk to him. I wasn’t unkind, but I wasn’t kind, either, careful to avoid eye-contact. And I probably judged him in some negative way instead of engaging him, because I can be an idiot.
Then, as I was leaving, I overheard the hostess talking to another staff person about how the owner of the restaurant was still hanging out in the bar and how cool it is that he acts like a normal person here. I felt dumb.
Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2
I want to be someone who defaults to kindness and generous engagement with strangers. First of all, it’s better this way. Second, you never know…