Vacation Thoughts #1

Vacation is a great time to get away, refresh, and rethink many things. I love playing with my kids at the beach and speanding time with my wife. My kids have been looking forward to this vacation for a long time now. They have talked about it for weeks. And so far it has been exactly what we had hoped. Fun, good weather, and calm. It is my prayer that my relationship with my wife will grow greater and deeper this week as we spend time together and serve the Lord together. I pray that God will show me new ways on how to better love her. She really is God’s gift to me. I hoping to connect with each of my wonderful six children. They are not burdens, but blessings. I pray that each one will know me more after this vacation is over.
Our vacation this year, like last year, is mixed with another agenda than just simply relaxing. We are on mission, looking to serve the people at our campground in hope that God will use us in some way to share His love to our fellow campers. We are not superior than those who do not mix vacation with mission trips. To think so we would be prideful and ignorant and pagan. But, having a mission in mind while on vacation is helping me personally in my walk with God. And trust me, vacation is an easy time to not only relax physically, but also spiritually. And this is something I do not want to do, nor need to do. I need God just as much now as I need Him in the every day grind of «normal living ».

On thing that helps me is vacationing and serving with other people. It keeps me motivated spiritually as we talk about the Lord, the week He has planned for us, and work and serve together. It reminds me of how we need the church. This year we are not with the same families as last year. I am thankful for God’s providence in this. It reminds me how I need to be actively connecting with new people, and how I need them in my life for my own spiritual growth. I am so looking forward to cultivating a deeper relationship with a family that I have known for many years, but now have a chance to get to know and love in a whole new way. I pray that God will use this week to transform our relationship into something that will blossom into God-sized fruit, to the praise of His glory.

This morning I read Isaiah 42. There are many things in that chapter that spoke to me. Here are just a few highlights.

Though it is the Old Testament, Jesus Christ is a major highlight in this chapter. The Spirit is upon Him, and He is a light to the Gentiles (v.1). That is me! Thank you Jesus for opening my eyes to my sin and rebellion that I might repent, and turning my heart toward You as my Savior!

In v. 8 I saw that God does not give His glory to another. I thank God that He is worthy of that kind of honor. He is not some idol that man formed, or an idea that someone created. He is the maker of the heavens (v.5).

In that last part od the chapter I see how the people of Israel were blind to God and His laws. They were suppose to be God’s messenger (v.19), but decided to live by their own perspective, and not God’s. They were blind and deaf to God’s ways and even His discipline (v.20,23-25). This is a wake up for me and caused me to pray this morning, «Oh God, Open my eyes and ears to your ways, and may I recognize Your discipline, that I may not turn my heart away from You and walk according to my own ways.»

Vacation has begun well. I pray it finishes well. I want to relax. But, not to the expense of my relationship with Christ. Knowing Him surpasses all other things (Philippians 3).

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