It’s ‘Grace Kai’ (open house for students) this evening. We start in three hours! We check our Facebook page: only one reply so far. Did we buy too much food? We do our routine one-on-one messaging. “Great, you’re coming!” “Oh sorry you can’t make it. Hope you can come next time!”
Typically, six or seven guests join our meal table, sometimes up to thirteen, or as few as three, but it’s a rare occasion when food is left over.
5pm The phone rings. “It’s me. I can’t come tonight but can I drop by at six?”
6pm The young man comes by to fill us in on his life, and say hi to our baby. In the midst of vacuuming, finishing cooking, and picking up our son from soccer, we chat and pray with him. Thankfully our short-term worker is mingling with guests as they arrive, granting us these precious moments.
7pm The doorbell. An international student arrives to make an exotic dessert. He phones home to check the recipe. His mum phones his granny to double check!
7.10pm A young man who’s a new Christian arrives. We’re so glad he’s here tonight: it’s really great to have someone there who can share fresh, locally grown faith in Jesus. The growing party entertains our baby, and our hyper seven-year old.
7.15pm Our 6pm guest leaves.
7:25pm Food’s on the table just in time as everyone else arrives in a rush.
This is a meal with the Meas family, but we always pray it’s also a meal with Jesus. This is the only time most students share a family meal between university holidays. In my student years, my church members hosted us every Sunday for lunch—such comfortable Sabbath afternoons! Now we seek to recreate that atmosphere, a place for young people to de-stress and meet Jesus: opening His word with satisfied bellies, and warm hearts. And when we close the Bible at 9.30, real conversation begins until the last train home.