In Canada, summertime brings us opportunities for a variety of activities unavailable during the other seasons of the year. Popular ones are frequent quick trips to close by cottages or campsites. These times allow families to reconnect, spouses to deepen their relationships, and friends to relax and have fun. We all need time away. Our Lord modeled this. He slipped away for quiet time, away from the throngs and responsibilities to rest and pray.
Several years ago Weyburn and I found ourselves between churches. When summer came that year we found that we did not have any church responsibilities for the first time in our marriage. We had no church duties that required us to be at service every week. We could plan our summer without considering when we needed to be at our church attending to our obligations. We had never felt the freedom to do that before. It was a gift from God to us that summer. We needed the break and a time to heal. However, it was a pattern that was easily repeated the next few years, and unchecked, it started a habit that was hard to break.
We had to step back and realize that if everyone spent most of their time away from their home church during the summer, our church family would suffer. We have since adjusted our schedule to reflect the love and thankfulness we say we have for the Lord and for the church family He has provided for us.
We have always made sure that our tithes and offerings were given to our home church even if we were not able to be in service, but we are now intentional about the days we allow ourselves to be away, and the days we will be in our home church. Our regular attendance is for our benefit, but we trust it also serves as an encouragement to our church family. We hope that our presence helps them to know that we love them, and want to contribute to a healthy church community.
We pray that we are the example spoken of in Colossians 3:16
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
Debi Snider... more