Every season is a gift from the Lord and should be used effectively for Him. Summer is a unique season that affords extra opportunities for growth, enrichment, and renewal—if we plan wisely.
I always have a long list going into summer of what I want to accomplish. But I’ve broken my list into five categories—objectives every Christian should strive for. In this week’s Growth Points video, I share these goals:
(If you cannot see this video in your RSS reader or email, you can watch it here.)
1. Spiritual depth
Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.—Colossians 2:7
There ought to be a hunger in our heart to know Jesus more! Of course, I spend time in God’s Word and in prayer year round, but in the summer, I work to carve out extra periods of time for intentional growth in my walk with God. I want to take the opportunity to become more deeply rooted in Christ—establishing roots for greater fruit in the fall season of ministry.
2. Personal development
Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might…—Ecclesiastes 9:10
The summer provides extra time to focus on reading that helps me personally develop—as a man, a man of God, a husband, a father. During the summer, I read—not necessarily commentaries or extended sermon preparation material—but life enrichment material.
At the beginning of the summer I select a long list of books that will increase my knowledge and sharpen me. My book list includes general history, church history, missionary biographies, organization/administration, finances, and others.
I’d encourage you to consider, What area of my life do I need to grow in? Perhaps it is time management, marriage, or budgeting. Whatever area the Holy Spirit brings to your mind, choose a few good books on it, and start reading.
3. Organizational refinement
Let all things be done decently and in order.—1 Corinthians 14:40
I plan significant time in the summer to clean and organize my life. From my personal lists to my computer files to my garage, I purge, sort, and set in order. It may take some time, but I find it is always time well invested.
For anyone, having your life in order frees your psych to work creatively. For Christians, it also frees your ability to respond to the impulses of the Holy Spirit.
4. Relational fulfillment
And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:—Hebrews 10:24
Christian fellowship is one of the greatest gifts the Lord has given us. Be intentional about creating non-agenda fellowship with prayer partners, Christian friends, accountability partners.
Most of all, invest in your family. In addition to whatever vacation time you plan, take some day trips with your spouse and children. Plan some, and be spontaneous some. Create family memories, and fill your children’s hearts with time with their dad.
5. Eternal investment
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.—Colossians 3:2
The best way to redeem the summer is to invest it into eternity. Make soulwinning a summer priority. Invite new Christians over for a meal. Serve in Vacation Bible School. Send a young person to summer church camp. Write notes of encouragement to those who serve faithfully in your church. Prepare for fall training seasons for those you serve.
Perhaps you could take these five summer objectives and make them a template for your summer goals. Carve out thirty minutes to prayerfully list a few goals under each category. How can you make the most of this summer?