For many years now I’ve tried to capture anew and be intentional about experiencing summer the old fashioned way. You know, school lets out and one is free. There’s free time in abundance. The summer is not booked up with yet another string of activities to fill the days and further wear one out. One slows down. One breathes in and breathes out and practices smiling, as Thich Nhat Hahn teaches. One plays the Best of the Beach Boys at least twice pretty loud, ideally near or upon water. One spends loads of time with friends and family. One rests. One can even enjoy being bored; board shorts optional.
To be honest, now, I already have a bunch of things on my calendar. Time in Corpus Christi at Annual Conference meetings; plus time to visit family down there. Quality time will be invested in welcoming three wonderful new people to the Faith Church staff; and we’re installing new carpet and new phones and planning new beginnings on many new things. I get to visit kids in Chicago. Later in the summer my wife is taking me to Alaska. Zoom zoom. I’m one lucky guy. And, I’m feeling a tiny bit tired just thinking about all the arrangements and plans and to do’s.
Jesus said: Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Matthew 11.28-30, The Message)
So I share this scripture passage with you, with the Faith Church congregation once again, and with myself. I don’t think one can be exposed to this one too often. To walk with Christ and learn from him. To learn the unforced rhythms of grace and learn how to take a real rest. Ahhhhhhhhhhh….
Happy summertime, friend. And, really—may the peace of Christ be with you all summer long.
david gilliam, summer pastor, faith united methodist church, austin. for more about faith church, click here.