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Face to Face: Meditations on Friendship and Hospitality [Paperback]

By Steve Wilkins (Author)
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Item description for Face to Face: Meditations on Friendship and Hospitality by Steve Wilkins...

Today, more and more of us are growing up in abnormal families and hostile environments, and, consequently, we don't understand the basics of friendships of hospitality. Many moderns, even Christians, try to deny the importance of these virtues by sinking deeper into their selfishness, only to complain of greater loneliness. The heart of Christian reality is a society-a Trinity-of persons living with and for one another. God created us to live in bonds of society and friendship, not as lone rangers. The Christian faith presents friendship and hospitality not as luxuries but necessities. God does not save us in isolation but in community with other people. There is no possibility of living to the glory of God apart from godly companions. In this book, Steve Wilkins seeks to call us back to the joyous obligations of friendship and hospitality. He spells out the biblical virtues that nurture both, as well as the stumbling blocks that will hinder us.

1. Its Necessity And Obligation 2. The Characteristics Of A True Friend 3. Cultivating Friendships : Justice And Mercy 4. Cultivating Friendships : Love And Good Works 5. Destroying Friendships 6. Commands To Hospitality 7. The Nature Of Hospitality 8. The Benefits Of Hospitality 9. Stepping Towards Hospitality 160 Pages

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Canon Press
Pages   142
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.68" Width: 5.52" Height: 0.36"
Weight:   0.45 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 22, 2002
Publisher   Canon Press
ISBN  1591280001  
ISBN13  9781591280002  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living > Relationships
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Worship & Devotion > Devotionals
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality > Devotionals

Christian Product Categories
Books > Christian Living > Practical Life > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Face to Face: Meditations on Friendship and Hospitality?

Definately a Must Read!!  Nov 23, 2004
As Christians, it is our duty to recover the art of true friendship and hospitality in our nation that is inhabited by a stiff-necked people. America is continually going downhill in this field. We have become arrogant and unfriendly. The Church is greatly to blame for this. The most common complaint made by unbelievers about the Church is that she is unfriendly. We have become too busy for others. Many churches have so much activity that it is impossible to have real, godly fellowship. Christ tells us that we are to live for one another. Rev. Wilkins says, "We labor not merely to supply our own needs but to obtain an abundance so that we may have more to give." He also states, "The heart of Christianity is a scoiety-a Trinity-of persons living with and for one another." We are to imitate the godhead in our lives-in all that we are and all that we do if we are indeed seeking to form a Christian society. Oh, how far short we fall of doing just that! Unless we believe in the glorious Trinity, there can be no real friendships or fellowship.
Rev. Wilkins does a beautiful job explaining how to go about recovering godly friendships and hospitality. He shows, as well, the great impact they can have on the pagan world. He says about Hospitality, "It is the most important testimony in a pagan society that the Church can give, able to attack and tear down all pagan strongholds." It is "like the mortar that holds bricks together. It matters little if we have deep and rigorous theological knowledge but do not have this; for then we are nothing but an inconsistent and impotent church."
Inviting others, be they unbelievers or fellow believers, to our homes and eating good food with them is one of the best ways to show the loving kindness of our Lord. As Rev. Willkins says, "We have to eat, drink, and be merry in order to preach the gospel."
If you are interested in reforming the Church, as every Christian should be, read this book about one of the central, but forgotten, themes of Christianity. I am so thankful for men like Rev. Wilkins!
Convicting and Encouraging  May 4, 2004
At just 142 pages, this book may not take long to get through - but it can hardly be dubbed a "light read".
Face to Face: Meditations on Friendship and Hospitality by Steve Wilkins is a convicting, no-nonsense look at the significance of human interaction to Christian living.
Part one, "Friendship", examines the fallacy of the "lone ranger Christian" and necessity of biblical friendships for growth in wisdom and in holiness. Wilkins does not expect the reader to be best friends with every Christian they encounter, but does show the need to practice friendliness to all. He describes various types of friendships that should be sought out and differentiates the characteristics of a true friendship versus that of the dangerous fair-weather sycophantic variety. He realistically acknowledges the difficulty in having intimate friendships, such as the time they demand to maintain and the pains of resolving conflicts along the way - but also shows how sanctifying such a relationship can be.
"Hospitality", the second part of the book, details the practice of biblical friendliness not only to believers but to strangers as well. Wilkins examines the concepts of hospitality in the lives of individuals and in the congregation.
To quote the author, "In everything a faithful church does, it must set its face against all forms of self-worship, warning of its destructiveness and eventual condemnation. The faithful church may proclaim this through the direct preaching of the gospel or by simply living the gracious and holy life which God has called us to live - a life of peace, true and principled love, real loyalty and communion together. When God's people care for one another, it is a powerful testimony against the manifest selfishness and idolatry of the world and it is necessary in order to give credibility to the preached word."
Face-to-Face is sobering because it cuts to the heart of the reader and charges them to examine their own behavior in how they relate to others. Sometimes, this can be uncomfortable because of how accurately the author describes even the most subtle of sinful behavior detrimental to friendships and the ability to practice hospitality. Yet, Wilkins balances this conviction with biblical encouragement and guidance for building and repairing relationships, and gives direction for making changes in ones' lifestyle to become more sensitive and accommodating to the needs of others.
Enlightening and Convicting  Nov 4, 2003
Steve Wilkins has once again hit a home run. So many people have forgotten the basic fundamentals of friendship and hospitality. We like to think we're friends to many and hospitable as well, but are we really? Wilkins calls us to examine the nature of biblical friendship and hospitality, both of which are sadly lacking in 21st century America.

Are our shortcomings in these areas due to dysfunctional families, fear of having people in our homes, or just wanting to be alone? Wilkins shows us that God created His people to be true friends, not superficial acquaintances who say "good morning" as we walk out to pick up the newspaper. And hospitality doesn't necessarily mean hosting a catered five-course dinner. Far too many of us have departed from the pleasure and enjoyment that God intended for His people as defined in the Scriptures. This book goes a long way in seeking to right such wrongs. Highly recommended.

Helpful and Clear  Aug 5, 2003
I love Steve Wilkins. He always combines an acute knowledge of Scripture with trenchant insights and simplicity of heart. Both his love of God's Word and his love of friends and guests shine forth clearly in this delightful little book.

Perhaps the table of contents would be most helpful in understanding this book:

Part One: Friendship
Chapter 1 - Its Necessity and Obligations
Chapter 2 - Characteristics of a True Friend
Chapter 3 - Cultivating Friendships: Justice and Mercy
Chapter 4 - Cultivating Friendships: Love and Good Works
Chapter 5 - Destroying Friendships
Part Two: Hospitality
Chapter 6 - Commands of Hospitality
Chapter 7 - The Nature of Hospitality
Chapter 8 - The Benefits of Hospitality
Chapter 9 - Stepping Toward Hospitality

As you can see, Mr. Wilkins first explains the theory and Biblical commands of friendship and hospitality, and then progresses through assorted responsibilities and blessings of each. After explaining that Christians are required to pursue hospitality (actually to *persecute* hospitality - he provides some fascinating insight on this Greek word), he lays out the spirit and nature of this hospitality, its blessings to individual, family, and church, and a number of good tips on how to step toward hospitality. Littered throughout are a number of personal little experiences, notes, and tips which make the book ever more helpful and enjoyable. The writing is clear and kind - not obscure or esoteric at all.

One note: this is not a handbook on the details of friendship or hospitality. You won't find in here many suggestions for how to make the perfect phone call, design the perfect thank you card, or position the perfect guestbook. Some ladies in particular might be looking for this sort of thing, but you won't find it here. This book includes Biblical principles and guidelines mostly on a higher level: the need to have many families in your church over, not the type and volume of music you should play when they arrive.

A fine book. Also read _The Hospitality Commands_, by Alexander Strauch.


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