By GJ Frye
The summer is a time to relax and have fun because we do not have school; at least that is what our culture has deemed it to be. While many people get summer jobs as a respectable way to spend the summer, many treat summer as a three and a half month cruise. There is nothing wrong with some time for solitude, relaxation and enjoyment, but spending an entire summer for yourself is an issue on the moral and spiritual levels.
Those lazy days during summer vacation are easily wasted on doing nothing to advance our character or spread the love of Jesus. Too often, I have fallen to the same trap, as I am about to describe. We complain about being bored and having nothing to do. But there is so much need in the world and so much we draw attention away from when we choose to live in a world of only luxury and do not challenge ourselves to see the gritty world in which many are forced to face.
Those who spend summers going on mission trips as opposed to nonstop beach trips, who volunteer their time helping out at a local soup kitchen or homeless shelter, who do community service rather than watch TV shows for hours on end are the ones who are following Christ in what He called His disciples to do. We need to learn to act upon self-discipline and self-motivation in order to further the good news, in order to be an outpouring of love and hope into the people who need a light.
The experience of going to Disney World is nothing compared to seeing the Spirit move. Spending three weeks in a five-star hotel and spa will not be as refreshing as spending three weeks being cleansed by the blood of Christ and sharing your life with strangers who are in love with the same mission you are. Mission trips to other countries are so powerful and impacting, but they are also not the only things you can do to make a difference. Mission trips into the homes of neighbors in need can be just as impacting.
There is no excuse to be bored in the summer. Relax and find enjoyment, but do not treat the summer as an extended party unless it is a party with Jesus. Jesus had a divine purpose for every trip He took, every party He went to and yet He still enjoyed himself.
Do not get me wrong; I am not condemning anyone for taking a road trip. But will it not be just as rewarding if we decide to stop and plant some roses along the way, instead of just smelling them?