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74 || Vacations: A Strange and Beautiful Thing

My husband and I have just returned from our five-year-anniversary trip to Seattle. We laughed, we danced, we ate, we sang, we came home happy. Seriously. We had a blasty. We stayed in a treehouse bed and breakfast for one night. Totally great experience. Then, we stayed in a swanky hotel in downtown Seattle that has more amenities than all of the hotels in my entire hometown combined. Fah real.

Vacations 

They are a strange and beautiful thing, no?

We scamper off, evading all responsibility, and live like wild hellions for several days of uninhibited glory! And no matter how long your vacation, (We can all relate to this) for one second. One. Hot. Second. You feel free.

Job? Nah. Bills? No way. Difficult relationships? Huh? Endless piles of laundry? Margarita. Weekly dinners with your in-laws? Shopping. Screaming kids? Dessert. Dishes over flowing the sink? Do not disturb.

I’ve been doing some reflective thinking on the spirit of vacationing. (<–who says things like that?) And holy cow, do all my Christian brothers and sisters have A LOT to say on this topic. Isn’t that just like us Christian folk? Take something awesome and saturate it with debate, semantic arguments, and make it as complicated as all get out. From all corners of the inter-webs, appreciated and acclaimed pastors boom out opinions. “Thou shalt not vacation!” or “Thou shalt vacation for milestone events only!” or “Thou shalt vacation with four children under the age of 5 to Disney World and sing the Hallelujah chorus the entire time in order to praise God.” In fact, I even read one blog that stated that the memories made on vacation are exactly correlated to how well you are doing as a parent.

Um, what?

This issue has just turned into a Jesus-juking, mud-slinging, pissing-match about who can be more holy and who can be more free in Jesus. Ugh — this still doesn’t help me. After a bit of Bible reading, googling, blog reading, and staring blankly at the seat in front of me on the plane back from Seattle — oh, and mulling through these thoughts with my husband — here’s where I’ve landed:

Of course Jesus never took a trip to visit the Biltmore House at Christmas time or to the beach for a weekend away with his buddies. I mean, really. Let’s get real. (I’m just trying to lighten this up here, y’all.)

But, I do know this: He rested, He enjoyed time with friends. He ate often with his close circle. He celebrated, and He intentionally went away for time alone. In fact, He even speaks highly in all areas of His word about these restorative and healthy habits. Sure, all things in excess can become bad. And, yes, there is much to check here when it comes to our hearts. But the bottom line is this: If you’ve fallen victim to the throes of your busy day-to-day life, see if you can get away for a few days. You may be off the clock of responsibility and commitments, but you are never off the clock of living as a disciple of Jesus.

So, go somewhere!

With your spouse, your family, or a few close friends — and see what God does with your restorative intentions.

He is the God who sees, meets, and mends.
Let Him.
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