Sunday, May 19, 2013

Go to the Mountain

As the school year and all it's intensity begins to wind down for us, I recognize my need to just step away and reaffirm all that I am doing - before I do it all again next year.  I work very hard all the time as I'm sure all of the Moms and Dads reading my blog do too.  I am attending to my husband, to the educational needs of my children, tutoring others, mentoring, ministering, maintaining my home, blogging, creating teaching plans and caring for the special needs of my son with medical issues and all the management that goes into his overall care/services.  It's certainly a busy life, running at full speed.  However, I wouldn't trade it for the world.  One of the things I've learned is that I have to step away at times in order to maintain balance.

While traveling this weekend to the Smoky Mountains I was reminded of Jesus in John Chapter 6.  He does this awesome miracle of feeding the five thousand and then it tells us that he "...withdrew again to the mountain by Himself alone."  afterward He goes on to walk on the water and rescue the disciples.  I love the picture of Jesus creating balance in his life and ministry here on earth by time and time again pulling away for short periods, for the purpose of refueling his soul.  He goes with such intensity meeting the needs of all those around Him and then all of a sudden He "retreats by Himself" and reconnects with His mission, His heavenly Father and refuels His soul to press on in excellence.

I think we can take a lesson from Jesus' example.  We need to "go to the Mountain" and take those breaks so we can be the best we can for our families and to serve God and those around us with excellence.  I know the temptation to run full steam ahead into planning for next year and then all of a sudden, you run out of summer and before you know it the next school year is starting.  (I did that last year!)  I didn't want to make that mistake again this year and I encourage you to refresh yourselves as well this summer.  Plan at least one thing for yourself, in a way that creates refreshment for your mind, soul and spirit!

Here are some suggestions for this summer to take a break and refresh your soul:

1)  Travel -  Take a day trip or longer to someplace you would really enjoy like the beach or mountains.  Plan it with friends and leave the kiddos behind for this short siesta!

2) Read - pick up a book that is purely for pleasure.  Books on the Trivium don't count.  LOL

3) Walk - Carve out a day to go for a walk early in the morning while the day is fresh and new. Appreciate what God has made and take time to worship during your walk as you inventory all you see.

4) Just say NO - it's OK to not sign on for that extra swim class this summer or take over the Church's welcoming committee while you're on "break".

5) Make a non-utilitarian friend - Find someone who you appreciate as just a friend and for no other useful purpose.

6) Laugh - Rent a funny movie, go to a clean comedy show or read a book on jokes!  Just laugh!

7) Find a Spiritual Mentor - seek out someone who can give you a deeper perspective on your walk with God providing encouragement to your soul.

8) Pick up a Hobby - always wanted to learn piano?  Been meaning to try out that new fishing pole you bought three years ago?  Then do it!  :)

9) Start a Prayer Journal - if you don't already do this, then I encourage you to.  You'd be surprised at how much you forget when you don't write it down!  God's faithfulness will encourage your soul.

10) Date Night - make sure you have a date night or two this summer!  It can be with friends or with your spouse.  Just take time to step away and and not worry about what the kids menu has on it or what movie is rated G!

I hope you will take time this summer for yourself and rejuvenate your soul!  You'll be a better Teacher for it....I promise!

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