Making the most of summer
Summer holidays are great!! A time to relax and recharge the batteries, something I’m sure we all need after the challenges of 2021. But what does being a Christian have to do with our summer holidays?
Paul, in his letter to the Colossians, says this in 3:17 - “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Whatever you do - that definitely includes our summer holidays!! Here are a few thoughts about how all of us, from the youngest to oldest, can put these things into practice.
We’re called to be thankful in all things and our summer breaks provide great opportunities to do that.
To give thanks for rest, to be thankful for time away from work and school. God didn’t make us non-stop robots but people who need to time to slow down
To give thanks for all the good things God has made. Walks in the woods, day-trips to beach, time playing in the garden are all chances to enjoy the good world God has made for us to appreciate that and to say a huge thank you to him
To give thanks for time with our families, these God-given people in our lives who care for us and to appreciate the space to have fun and relaxation with them
Doing everything in Jesus’ name
Summer holidays are a chance to practice trying to live in ways that are honouring and pleasing to God, both in our hearts and in what we do.
Families are great, but we all know what can happen when holiday cabin fever sets in!! But we can choose to make a conscious effort over summer to try and love well our mums and dads, our brothers and sisters, our kids, and not try to wind them up or annoy them!
While holidays are a great time for us to enjoy ourselves, we can never forget Jesus’ heart for other people, so we can try to make a conscious effort to keep thinking, praying and caring for others, even as we enjoy some rest.
Here are a few really practical ideas of things to do over summer to help us all try and live in ways pleasing to Jesus
Use the extra time to read our Bibles. Maybe not having to rush out the door for school every morning might mean there's a chance for 5 mins to sit down and read the Bible together as a family and pray for the day ahead. If you want some resources to help with this check out the link here.
Read Christian books. Summer is a great time to read some good books, it’d be so beneficial to include one or two books that will help you as you seek to live for Jesus. Adults, why not join in with others in the church family and read Gentle and Lowly by Dane Ortland?
Make the most of time in the car. My memory of summer holidays is of long car journeys and they’re a great time to remind ourselves of Bible truths. Why not listen to the Spotify playlists (whole church and kids songs) that Vic has made and sing along to the songs that we sing at Trinity at Four? Or perhaps stick on a Christian podcast (for families with kids, I highly recommend the Faith in Kids podcasts).
Keep doing church. Although routines may be slightly different, keep doing church. If you’re in Henley, do come along to our Summer services and enjoy the socials before and after some of them. And if you’re away, find a church nearby and see how they do church and spend a Sunday with those brothers and sisters instead!
Whatever your summer holds, I hope that you can all enjoy some rest and refreshment and remember that even our summer holidays are to be done in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to the Father through him.