Sunday, June 03, 2007

Pursuing Christ This Summer

Traditionally, the summer months are known for leisure, vacation, and rest. More often than not, this translates into a casual attitude toward the things of God. During the summer it is tempting to neglect the spiritual disciplines of prayer, Bible study, and church attendance.

I want to challenge you to grow in your relationship with God this summer. Be intentional about pursuing Christ with all your heart during these summer months. Develop a plan to help you stay focused for the next couple of months.

John Piper wrote, “Summer has its special power. Jesus Christ is refreshing, but flight from him into Christless leisure makes the soul parched. At first it may feel like freedom and fun to skimp on prayer, and neglect the Word. But then we pay: shallowness, powerlessness, vulnerability to sin, preoccupation with trifles, superficial relationships, and a frightening loss of interest in worship and the things of the Spirit. Don’t let summer make your soul shrivel. God made summer as a foretaste of heaven, not a substitute.”

Below are a few random suggestions for pursuing maturity in Christ this summer. Use the good ones and throw away the unhelpful ones.

1. Read a good Christian biography. Biographies have a way of getting us out of our little world. Read about the great men and women of God and watch your capacity to enjoy Christ increase.

2. Turn off the television. Instead of watching more tv this summer, unplug it. Call the cable company and get it shut off for the summer. You will save money, get a lot more done, and free up time to complete the rest of these suggestions.

3. Invite a neighbor or co-worker over for dinner.

4. Take a prayer-walk. Put on the tennis shoes and just spend some unhurried time in the Lord’s presence. Go with a list of all the people, events, and issues that need prayer.

5. Have extended family devotions.

6. Memorize Romans 8.

7. Find ways to strengthen the church. Instead of decreasing your church participation, increase it.

8. Read the book of Esther in one sitting.

9. Read a good book of theology. Think of a subject you want to know more about, and find the best book available on the subject.
Pursuing with you,
Pastor Justin

1 comment:

J.R. Malcolm said...

These are great recommendations. I know for me it is very easy to slip into a slothful state during the summer months.