By Eileen Gilmer, Associate Pastor
Have you started planning your summer vacation? I hope you’re scheduling some time away from work, school or everyday responsibilities. Even if you don’t leave town, everyone needs a break in routine. Maybe you like the long weekend route, or maybe you go for the multi-week time away. Whatever your preferred strategy, stepping back is vital.
Jesus knew the importance of getting away and re-centering. After he would teach, preach and heal, he would take some quiet time away from the crowds. Prayer and contemplation are hard to accomplish when the noise of life keeps escalating.
“And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone.” Matthew 14:23 NRSV
It’s often easy to leave our spiritual life at home during our vacations. Time away can easily become time away from God, as well. Not that God ever leaves us; we’re the ones who can forget to include God in our getaways. Headed to the beach? It’s a perfect opportunity to sit and listen to the sounds of the crashing waves. Maybe the mountains are more your style. What better place to take in the beauty of God’s great creation?
Wherever you go, I encourage you to seek out solitude, even if only for a few minutes each day. If you can’t keep focused long enough to meditate, try sitting and concentrating on a short scripture. My favorite is from Psalm 46:10. “Be still and know that I am God.” It’s a great reminder that all I have to do in that moment is to embrace the quiet and acknowledge that God’s got this.
When you’re back in town, we hope you’ll head home to Trinity United Methodist Church. Until then, happy travels.
You’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So… get on your way!