The Royal Treatment

The other day my wife, Linda, and I had the distinct pleasure of attending a tea hosted by former royal butler David Woodfine at O’More College of Design here in downtown Franklin, Tennessee. Besides preparing the scones from scratch, topped with real whipped cream, Woodfine regaled the group gathered on the lawn of the 19th century mansion that houses the design school’s headquarters with several engaging stories.

Woodfine laced his stories with wit and wisdom gleaned from more than five decades of service to such dignitaries as Queen Elizabeth, Prince Charles, Princess Diana, and numerous other royal personages. But of all the pithy quips and quotes he shared, the most compelling to me was his comment that “southern hospitality is second to none.” That is some compliment coming from one of the premier practitioners of hospitality.

As a born and bred southerner, I can attest that we are generally an hospitable lot. Even as my wife and I were in the process of relocating to this area, we were welcomed by our landlords to stay with them for the long weekend until our apartment was ready for occupancy and allowed to use their truck for the week until we got a car of our own, which was a big blessing to us. And such graciousness is not altogether uncommon here.

But the truth of the matter is that Scripture admonishes believers in particular to practice hospitality with one another. Whether we invite others to share a meal with us in our homes or out at a restaurant, or even to fellowship without food, we are urged to “roll out the red carpet” and give each other the royal treatment, for we are noble in our own right. If one with such stature as Jesus Christ came to serve us, surely we can serve one another.