Sofa Bed

We have a canine guest right now. Montana’s owners needed a place for her to live while one of their other dogs had puppies – an extended vacation for Montana, and a chance for us to care for a friendly, happy, low maintenance golden retriever. We have two cats, but Montana is our first dog. Even though it’s only for a few weeks, we will miss her when she goes home.

Montana loves to snuggle up with someone when it’s bed time, and makes sad sounds if left alone at night. My son Jared loves having her with him, but she’s sizable and doesn’t share bed space well, so he’s been sleeping on the flip-out sofa. It’s queen size, with enough room for Montana at the bottom and Jared in the upper half. There’s even space for our cats; the two of them like to study Montana while she’s sleeping. Everyone is happy, everyone has plenty of room, and no one loses sleep.

We have no spare bedroom, so we got this sofa from LLBean a dozen years ago.  It’s in the room where our Christmas tree goes, so overnight visitors during the holidays have a twinkly eight foot night light. Friends and relatives, acquaintances and a few strangers have found rest on it. My husband and I have spent a few nights on it, making sure it’s comfortable enough for guests. When they were younger, my sons made forts with it and used it for indoor camping – good weather year round, and a good place to play flashlight tag.

Usually, the flip-out is in its Clark Kent sofa form, only the Superman bed when needed. It’s a good place to read a book or have a glass of wine with friends. It’s seen its share of tears and smiles from guests of all ages. It’s been moved around a few times, changing place to fit the season and need. There’s nothing fancy about it, but it’s comfortable and sturdy. It is a hospitable presence in my home, making comfortable my family and those who visit.

I hope the same can be said of me and my family – that we are comfortable here, and we make others feel comfortable as well. Hospitality is a virtue appreciated by guests and strangers, but rarely given a thought by those who practice it. Angels disguised as strangers, friends, and family are everywhere. Let’s hope I have the good sense to invite them in – now that my sofa is Montana approved…

Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2

Be hospitable to one another without complaining. I Peter 4:9

NRSV translation 

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Johnna

I am a Christian educator and writer.I have worked in churches, denominational offices, and seminaries. I have a PhD in Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, with a focus on Practical Theology and educating in faith. In 2010, my book, "How the Other Half Lives: the challenges facing clergy spouses and partners," was published by Pilgrim Press. I believe that words can build doorways that lead to encounters with God through the Spirit.

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