Summer Routines + Our Father's Concerns

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Summer Routines + Our Father’s Concerns

Summer is here. For some of us, this marks a dramatic shift in daily and weekly routines. For others, the coming of summer brings merely a change in weather and the need to stock up on swim diapers, sunscreen, and sandals.

Regardless of what changes the summer does (or does not!) bring to your home, the shift in seasons offers us a chance to reevaluate the rhythms in our life.

This morning I was challenged by Jesus’ words to Peter in Matthew 16:23: “… you’re not thinking about God’s concerns but human concerns…” (CSB).

Ouch! How often my days and plans are shaped by human concerns (making my kid happy, keeping life comfortable and secure for me, doing what seems easy) rather than eternal concerns.

If our hearts are going to change, we need God to give us spiritual eyes to see the splendor of Jesus. So, before we draw up a new summer schedule, perhaps our prayer might be, “Father, show me and my family more of Jesus this summer.”

I’ve been reminded recently that parenting really is discipleship: by God’s spirit it is showing Jesus to our children and then gently training them to walk with Him.

What might that look like in our homes this summer? It might look like prioritizing

  • Spiritual nourishment in our families
  • Spiritual service in homes, church family, and community

If you’re like me, this can easily sound overwhelming. There are so many great resources out there and equally great opportunities to serve. Perhaps we could pick just one for each category and integrate them into our daily rhythms?

I don’t have many parenting tricks or secrets, but I’ll share one of the few I have learned: when it comes to family life, live by a routine, not a schedule. Simply put, as much as possible, create a predictable daily and weekly order of events for your kids, rather than trying to tie activities to specific times on the clock.

So, in our house, this might look like daily “Bible and book” time as we read aloud together during afternoon snack time + calling an elderly out-of-state family member every Friday afternoon.

Chances are, the Lord may have already laid on your heart some of His priorities for your summer. Taking a few minutes to plan when and how to implement them might be the difference between simply thinking about them and actually living them out.

As I’ve juggled the stresses and worries of parenting recently, I’ve been reminded of Jesus’ generous invitation:

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. –Matthew 11:28-30

As you seek to structure your days well for your kids sake—and your own sake!—may you experience the rest that comes from carrying Jesus’ easy yoke.

- Courtney