There is an old blues song that is ringing in my ears this morning:
Summertime, and the living is easy.
Catfish are jumping, and the cotton is high.
May is just getting here, but this is the time when most of us are firming up our summer plans. The days have been getting nicer. The sun is shining. Summertime is right around the corner. I’ve been thinking of camping, getting away to Lake Almanor, fishing, Spirit West Coast, Vacation Bible School and all good things summer. And of course my upcoming wedding in June is foremost in all my thoughts about summer.
As you get your summer plans in order, I want to plant a seed and get a plug in for the Lord. Vacations are good and God wants us to find times of rest and reconnection, but we never take a vacation from God. It is easy to allow worship and time with God to fall to second or third place and even be forgotten during the summer. I would encourage you to keep God present in your summer plans. Think of things like: How can I arrange my plans so I don’t miss worship on Sunday? If we’re away over a Sunday, what church could we visit? What can I do to help my family be aware of God’s presence during our vacation time?
That old blues song has another line that I love:
One of these mornings, you're gonna rise up singing
You're gonna spread your wings and take the sky
I feel like that is happening at New Hope. I have been so pleased and energized by the good participation and growing attendance on Sunday mornings. There have been many good reports from members and visitors of how they have been growing closer to God through being a part of New Hope. A recent visitor commented, “I really enjoyed your services - very on the mark and informal. I loved the message on love and the spirit-filled worship.” I also keep hearing great reports that we are warm and welcoming church. I am hoping that over the summer this trend will continue. May all our vacations and summertime fun bring us closer to God and renew and refresh us to serve the King of Kings with heart and soul and mind and strength at New Hope Community Church!