During the summer, everything changes. Your schedule changes, the routine of activities change, and the weather changes. Your ministry changes, too. Often, we reach the end of the summer thinking, “How did it go by so quickly? What did I accomplish?” Although you can do the following five activities at anytime during the year, engaging in them during the summer months will help you to take back your summer and enhance your ministry for the long term.
- Take a break. Have you planned your vacation yet? If not, do yourself and your ministry a favor, and schedule one. Take a week and go to the mountains, or the beach, or somewhere to simply relax. We all need the occasional respite from responsibilities, and the rejuvenation that a vacation can offer.
- Pray more. You’ve always wanted to have a deepened and more significant prayer life. This summer, make this your goal. Simply take a few minutes every day to pray. Schedule it in to your day’s activities. Praying more is one of the most important things you can do this summer.
- Plan for the future. With your regular schedule suspended, now is the time to plan. Your ministry will benefit immensely if you take time to revisit your mission and vision. Where are you going? What are you hoping to accomplish? Take some time to look at the broad picture, and set goals for the future of your ministry.
- Read books. What’s on your summer reading list? The books you read will affect how you live, minister, work, and pray. If you have any extra time this summer, get ahold of some great books. There is something about reading that helps to inspire your mind and broaden your vision.
- Deepen your relationships with others. Often, during our fast-paced schedules and busy lives, we allow our relationships to weaken. The summer provides a change in schedule that gives you the opportunity to spend more time with others. Go out to lunch with a few people that you haven’t talked with in a while. Use the summer evenings to host backyard barbecues. Do coffee with someone that you’ve been meaning to meet for a while. Deepening your relationships and forging friendships will improve you as a person, will help enhance your ministry, and will give you the ability to minister to others.
Summer is still a busy time. Many churches use the summer months to engage in a whole host of new ministry opportunities. Others find themselves needing a summer vacation from their summer vacation. Your summer may not look like the peaceful calm of lazy evenings and long days that you wish for, but perhaps these summer activities will enhance your ministry for the long term.