Memorial Day. The last day of school. The end of June. The Fourth of July. The heat of August. Labor Day. The first day of school.
Summer goes by faster than the other seasons. Soon we will see ads for Back-To-School sales. Time flies by. When you blink, summer’s over and fall is here.
What happens in the blazing haze of summer? These are the longest days of the year. Why do they whiz by so fast?
During summer we always look forward to something. Days are spent getting ready for baseball and basketball games, dance recitals, visits with extended family, amusement parks, cookouts, beach vacations, camp – all packed into a ten-week period. All are fun. Off times are filled with TV, swimming, movies. Schedules lapse, eating habits shift – ice cream outings are more frequent – and we stay up later. Everything about life screams SUMMER!
The school year carries our family along on a wave of scheduled activities and work priorities. From September to Mid-June, each day has a plan; each evening, too. When summer comes along, school year activities shift to summer ones. Somewhere in the middle, I get lost, flailing. I can’t seem to get a grip on the days, and many nights I go to sleep wondering where the time went. Keeping an eye on the clock is no help; the hours still escape. I can’t slow the days, no matter how I try. Every attempt at control dissolves. Half-hearted efforts to mark the time fizzle out.
Summer, a time when we should slow down to enjoy the life that God gave us, has become a time where we pack as much stuff in as we do the rest of the year. Activities don’t end, but my choices could be made more intentionally. This fast and free time is doing nothing to strengthen my faith, because I am doing less work on my faith. I read the Bible less, I pray less, I attend church less.
But I am God’s child and he will not let me wander aimlessly. Even though I struggle, he works in me and through me, despite my confusion.
The temptations of summer are attractive, and I allow them to blur my focus on God and my faith. It is during this shift in daily activities that I need to focus on him more, yet I stray further and further with every hot day that passes. By the time fall comes around I slide into home, feeling so far from where I was ten weeks before.
The best defense for spiritual flailing is to read, study, and pray the word of God into our hearts. When we do this, we are quicker to call on the Lord in everyday situations at any time of the year. God is always with me, but am I always with him? This is the question that I’m asking myself this summer.
For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. Romans 8:16 (NLT)