by Jake Hall

published in Family Matters eNewsletter May 16, 2019

We have a few more days to go on the school calendar until families begin their seasons of vacation and teachers take a break from the classroom, but you don’t need a calendar or a thermometer to tell that summer has already arrived. I can see that dazed summer glaze on so many faces. Students are ready for a break. Families are ready for a vacation. Just at most folks are gearing up for a summer break the church is readying for a season that is heavy with activity and light on attendance.

Every church I have ever served experiences some kind of the summer slump. As soon as school is out families will hit the road, head to the beach, or spend lots of weekends at the lake until school kicks off again in late August. I don’t believe we should bemoan or begrudge change in summer patterns; seeking out a different sabbath rhythm is the right thing to do.

Families need time to get away and what better time of the year than when school is out of session. You won’t hear me complaining about that. Rest and recreation are important parts of the rhythm of a healthy year physically and spiritually.

While summer may bring a different schedule and different patterns of engagement, the church takes on a new rhythm as well. Adopting a different kind of engagement with the church during summer might bring the kind of spiritual rejuvenation that you have been without during the rest of the year. Summer should not bring with it a spiritual drought for you or your family. Weekly rhythms of worship, reflection, prayer, and service keep you spiritually healthy every week. Find creative ways to engage your spiritual life even in this summer season.

  1. Join a summer reading group. Every year we pick a few popular books to consume. These spiritually nourishing titles are better for you than any beach reading you may peruse this year. You might just find a new author to appreciate like Peter Enns, Richard Rohr, Rachel Held Evans, or Rob Bell.

  2. Attend one of our additional worship offering. If you are missing too many Sundays and want to connect in a new way, try attending Taizé or Tavernsong. Come and find the blessings of intentional silence or extravagant feast with friends both new and old.

  3. Stream a Sunday Service During June and July. This summer we will be testing out our streaming capabilities for Worship. If you are looking for something to listen to while walking or running on the beach or hiking in Highlands, then check the church website starting in June.

  4. Plan on attending one of our Wednesdays in June where the church has left the building. Invite new friends and families to these fantastic summer gathering. Summer invites so many opportunities for fellowship. Join us at Amerson Park, Pinstrikes or even at your favorite greasy spoon. Each Wednesday in June brings with it a new opportunity for fellowship.

  5. Schedule your tithes and offerings. Help the church to avoid falling behind by fall, through scheduling your tithes or offering through online bill pay or by speaking with our Admin, Stephanie.

  6. Join us at King’s Park through a new partnership with Rebuilding Macon from June 24-28.

  7. Attend the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General Assembly in Birmingham on June 17-21.

With the deluge of opportunities this summer, how can there ever be a summer slump?