What do we do in summer?
First, most: enjoy.
Warm up and rest up. Frolic with childlike abandon. Wrestle with the dog. Visit people we haven’t seen all year, or longer. Take holidays (vacations)-holy days, times of Sabbath renewal, touching earth and breathing heaven. Response: rest until our pose of anxious weariness gives way to one of limber readiness, until our two speeds of rushing and crashing becomes a seamless rhythm of receiving and giving.
Lie in the sun.
Sleep in the shade.
Read in a hammock.
Do this in the most earthy and ordinary ways. Summer is a time for enjoying God and others, without reserve and without apology. It is a time of rediscovering the sheer pleasure of simply being alive: waking early or sleeping late, wading lake shores or tenting in rain forests, talking under starlight or staring silently, for hours, at clouds. Likewise, the summer of the heart is marked by leisure and pleasure, a kind of holy hedonism. We strive for nothing and yet have everything. We relish abundance without needing to hoard it or feel guilty about it. We heed the counsel that Scripture gives to rich people: don’t trust in your wealth, which is so uncertain, but trust in God, “who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment” (Ecclesiastes 3:11 *TNIV).
In the summer of the heart, we get that: abundance isn’t for trusting in; it’s for enjoying.
But there are a few opportunities, even necessitates, of summertime.
THE RHYTHMS OF KINGDOM LIVING
The people of God are already, the Bible says, citizens of heaven. Our heavenly citizenship doesn’t get transferred upon death, like a widow’s pension, but is established the moment we turn and follow Jesus. Part of our apprenticeship in Jesus, then, is learning to live the kingdom life even now, especially now, that we’re not home. If summer is equated with the fullness of the kingdom, we should pay close attention to the activities-inactivities- of summertime. That, indeed, is a major clue to what it means to do God’s will on earth as it is done in heaven. (pages 124-125)
One summer I went to visit one of my best friends. Years before, we had been in a grocery store for approximately 4 years where she told me things that that you don’t ordinarily tell another workmate; however, she sensed I was more mature than any guy that she knew, up to that point, and because I asked knowing that if she began to let me in, I would have a friend for life. And she did.
Back to that summer, I went to visit her. Though we had been separated for years, we came back together like we never missed a beat of togetherness. Turning our eyes to spiritual things, what I just explained of us coming together after being separated for years, was pure joy, just like our Father in heaven when all of us True Life Christians finally come home to our glorious, undeserved and unworthy place in heaven alongside our Father, the Son (our new husband), and the Holy Spirit.
Unfortunately, I had to leave my best friend’s place after only what seemed like a few hours, but once we’re in heaven, True Life Christians will never have to leave for all of eternity God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. That’s pure joy in the eternity of summer with the Godhead!
An Interview With Mark Buchanan About Spiritual Rhythm
~Darren L. Beattie, The Soul Blogger