Monday, July 12, 2010

Summertime and the livin's easy?

"There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:

a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace."
(Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)

There is a season for everything, but why is it that summer is so ingrained in our psyche? Nearly every coming of age drama is set during the summertime. We remember summer loves, family vacations, trips to the beach or mountains in sepia-tone.

What is one of your fondest summer memories?

Even once we grow up and our lives are consumed with the nine-to-five, summer still holds something special. Most of us don't get the summer off (my wife is a teacher and I'm not envious, nope, not one bit) yet we are blessed with longer days, a trick of the sun to fool us into thinking we have more time than we do. So we plan weekend getaways, draft a list of honey-dos, uncover the grill.

How does summer change your daily routine?

Yet summer is just another season, and we are reminded there is a season for everything under heaven. It is easy to succumb to the temptation to take the summer off. School is out, so we stop learning. We fill our weekends with activities and neglect the Sabbath. Summer barbecues are accompanied with summer desserts. We take vacations and sleep in, losing our personal discipline. In a word, we become lazy.

Are you tempted by the lazy days of summer?

But with temptations are opportunities for growth. Many of us have summer reading lists. We plan vacations or weekend getaways with the family to build lasting memories. Last night, I took advantage of the additional daylight and pushed my kids on the swing for those extra minutes. But we need to fight the temptation or our best summer plans will look the same as our New Year resolutions months after we've given up on them.

"The harvest is past,
the summer has ended,
and we are not saved."
(Jeremiah 8:20)

Don't let this summer slip away. Don't allow yourself to become too busy or too lazy to enjoy this season under heaven. Make memories. Have fun. Finish that project you've been putting off. Grow. But remember the creator that gives us this time, that blesses us with his sunshine.

This is one of many contributions to Bridget Chumbley's Blog Carnival. Today's topic is 'summer'. Head on over and see what others have planned this season or reflect on others' fondest memories.

Today also kicks off this summer's 'virtual small group' (VSG in the tags). I hope you come back as I take this season to reflect on the wonders of God's creation, share vacation stories, etc, with the prayer that we come out of this season closer to God than how we came into it.


Glynn said...

"make memories." Good advice. Good post.

katdish said...

Summertime means slowing down, a break for the kids from school. The older they get, the more we all appreciate a break from the structured learning and enjoy the slower pace. A good reminder here not to slow down too much! Thanks.

Rebecca on The Homefront said...

Awareness of each moment passing, rather than letting them slip away...thanks for the reminder!

Anonymous said...

GREAT advice. It's very true... it's easy to let it slip by.

(I'm a teacher, too, and my husband isn't jealous, either.)

Duane Scott said...

That's it. I officially declare a second summer to start in January. We need to remember to "make memories" year round.

Anonymous said...

There's got to be a good balance somewhere. Thanks for the reminder to find it. Great post, Fatha Frank.

Fatha Frank said...

Thanks everyone for your encouragement and comments. It will be a struggle for me to find the balance this summer for sure. A couple of big business trips before I can even think of taking any time off and then only a short time before my wife heads back to work. Funny how the world keeps turning and never seems to slow down.

@Rebecca: Welcome to my blog! Checked yours out really quick. Respect you and your husband a ton. This coming from a civilain desk-jockey in the chair force.

@Duane: Here, here. But I love the winter break for many of the same reasons. Trips to the mountains are just as fun when there's snow!

Angie Ovarlet said...

Hi Frank,

I think that you hit the nail on the head. I am a teacher also and every summer I say that I am going to get stuff done but I never do. I have been lazy, sleeping in, playing on the computer, watching TV. I guess it is hard to get motivated when it is over 100 outside and you really don't have anyone to answer to or anywhere that you have to be. However, I now realize that I do have God to answer to, he is one day going to ask me why I let things go. Thank you for waking me up. I can make a plan and get at least 2 major tasks accomplished everyday. Thanks again,
Angie Ovarelt