Since summer is upon us and families are planning for vacation, I want to offer few words on how Christians should vacation. I am not writing this subject as an expert, but rather, as a person who has failed and learned what to do and what not do from numerous past vacations. I’m even writing this from my present vacationing in California. The following is not of any particular order of importance.
What Not To Do:
- Try not to fly out on the weekend and Monday since it’s more expensive than let’s say Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. This is also true of hotels and other types of lodging.
- Don’t think that no one is watching what you’re doing. Vacation is not a license to sin. Though you have removed yourself and your family from your town of residence, God goes wherever you go and sees whatever you do and say. In other words, don’t loose God-consciousness.
- Don’t try to squeeze too many activities in one day. Give some time to enjoy each activity – even if it means to slow down or stop to look and smell flowers. After all, you are on your vacation, not meeting deadlines every day. Men, because we are task-oriented creatures, we need to work on this. Learn to slow down, chill out, and enjoy.
What To Do:
- Locate a good Bible-preaching-church nearby your destination to attend on Lord’s day. Though it is vacation, you should not vacation from gathering with God’s people on Lord’s day. This would speak volume to your children. If this is impossible due to where you would be, then sanctify your time for family worship on Lord’s day as you would normally do at a church service – e.g., singing, praying, giving offering, Scripture reading, and giving a homily or listening to one.
- Plan your schedule ahead, and be realistic about it. And give ample time for your activities (see #3 of “What Not To Do”).
- Set your budget and stick to it. Whether you’re the type of family that uses “cash in the envelop” system or credit card system with strict accounting, stick to your budget.
- Plan to listen to several sermons whether via ipods or what have you. I can assure you it would be time well used whether flying or driving long distance.
- Have good books. It is always a good idea to travel with wonderful company of notable/godly men and/or women. My advice would be to take some short reading books than several thick encyclopedia looking books. This way, you can actually and realistically finish at least one or two books, and walk away feeling a sense of accomplishment.
- Talk. This is one of the benefits of distant driving. Instead of blasting car radio you and your spouse can utilize such occasion for communication.
- Try something different or new like the food that you normally don’t eat. This way, you would either really appreciate what you normally do eat or realize what you’ve been missing. Remember, different does not mean it is bad; it is just different. You’d be amazed how many different types of sushi rolls I had. It’s all good.
- Try to include at least one educational event (and I don’t mean eating something educational) such as visiting a museum, science center, famous library, or local historical site.
- Be open to evangelistic opportunities. When vacationing you meet all sorts of different people from different places. Make Christ known. Share the gospel. If possible, exchange contact info (but be wise) so that you can follow-up.
- Whatever you do, do all for the glory of God.
If you have other helpful suggestions that you’d like to pass along to the readers of this site, feel free to leave comments.