Whenever I travel, I try my best to stay with friends and connections. Not only does this cut down on expense, but it also affords me wonderful insider travel tips and home cooking. In return, I try to offer hospitality to international guests when I can. Apart from the obvious benefits of friendship and fellowship, there are other reasons to do so.
Reason One: They expand your understanding of language.
If your guest hails from a non-English-speaking country, you'll have a chance to learn vocabulary and pronunciation from a native speaker. Even with guests from other English-speaking countries, you will find plenty of difference in the way you handle your common language.
Reason Two: They force you to confront your own culture.
International house guests will notice cultural quirks and point out absurdities that you never even thought to question. ("You mean you cut down a perfectly good tree every year and bring it inside your house? Why not just decorate it outside?") In puzzling out your responses, you'll be forced to see that your culture is just as foreign to outsiders as theirs seems to you.
Reason Three: They bring you treats.
When you travel outside your own borders, you're guaranteed to fall in love with local snacks impossible to find back home. Short of catching expensive and time-consuming flights every time you crave Cheezles, you can rely on visits from traveling friends to keep you stocked.
Reason Four: They broaden your ministry opportunities.
The best reason to keep international house guests is to fulfill the biblical mandate to offer hospitality to strangers.
Some stranger than others.