While the official summer season starts in a few weeks, many of us are already on summer schedules with our kids finishing school. We’ve traded early mornings, packing lunches, and homework for a different routine.
While summer days are different than school days, they can also get busy, especially now that the world is opening up again. We might send our kids to camps or go on a family vacation. We have pool parties and gatherings. We might tackle some projects around the house.
But let’s not forget about the importance of rest and downtime as a family. We don’t need to be cruise directors and plan every waking minute for our kids while they’re off for the summer. It’s okay if they get bored, it gives them the opportunity to find something to do.
It’s okay not to have every day planned out, some of the best memories we make with our kids may be unplanned and spontaneous. Be open to lazy days, it’s good to nap and to catch up on rest. If we don’t rest, we can only go so far. Rest isn’t a reward, it’s a necessity to help us lead our families well.
It’s good for us as parents to model rest to our children, both physical and spiritual rest. We do need sleep, but we also need spiritual connection with God. The summer is a great opportunity for us to do this individually and with our families.
May Matthew 11:28-30 MSG be our encouragement, “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.”
How are you planning to rest this summer?