I want to encourage you this summer to approach your vacations as mini-sabbaticals in which you build into your time away the same principles of weekly Sabbaths (Stop, Rest, Delight, Contemplate). Instead, then, of being time when you might drift from Him and return home tired, you actually renew your communion with Jesus and yourself. My vacations and summers were revolutionized a number of years ago when I began to do this. It takes planning, forethought, and prayer, especially when you are taking children into account! But it is well worth it! Ask yourself: STOP – What do I need to do to really cease from all my work? REST – What kind of things will enable me to rest this vacation? DELIGHT – What will replenish my soil and fill me with energy, and to delight in God’s gifts? CONTEMPLATE- How can I build in time with God during this extended time? What. Read more.
For the last few years I have approached my vacations as ‘mini-sabbaticals”, seeking to structure my time according to Sabbath principles – Stopping (work), Resting, Delighting and Contemplating God. Part of what this has meant for me the last few years, besides thinking through vacations much more purposefully so that my soil gets fresh nutrients from God through doing holy “nothing”, has been to take a few days alone with the Trappists in St. Joseph’s in Spencer Massachusetts. When this blog is posted, I will be there. Why and what will I be doing? The 60-70 monks, who live as a strict Benedictine community on a 1 by 3 mile plot of land, have taken vows of stability, poverty and conversion of life (celibacy and obedience to the authority of the Abbot). Their lives are so far from contemporary American Christianity that I find my days with them drive me to Jesus, to simplicity, to. Read more.