By Carol Brown         

I believe in the value of vacations. Since I was a child, family vacations have been a big part of my summers. Each June, our family packed the station wagon, hitched up the travel trailer, and headed for adventures in far away places with cooler climates and streams and lakes for swimming.


With our own family, Steve and I have made family vacations a priority even in years when money was tight and time away was hard to come by. As a family we have traveled to destinations like the Grand Canyon, Key West, and New York City. We have seen amazing sights, discovered new adventures, and even learned a few things along the way, but the real value of our vacations is not measured in miles traveled or sights seen. The value of a vacation is found in the time spent reconnecting with the ones we love. I treasure the time spent in conversation with my husband and children, the attention that we give to each other without the distractions of work and friends, and the memories that we make through shared experiences.


As our kids get older and their summer plans get more complicated, a family vacation gets harder and harder to plan. This year I fought with determination and found five days that we can all vacation together. As I thought about why I place so much value on our family vacations, I realized that I should be just as determined about finding time for a spiritual vacation. We all need a vacation with God. Just like a family vacation, a vacation with God can give us the much needed time to reconnect with the one who loves us most. A vacation with God can take us away from the distractions of our lives and allow us to rest in the presence of our Creator.


Whether or not a family vacation is in your plans for this summer, I hope you'll take a vacation with God. Plan a day to get away from your usual routine and spend some time in communion with your Holy Father. As you reconnect with the one who knows you and loves you most, I hope you'll find that the value of a vacation with God is rest and refreshment for your soul.