Finding Down Time

“What did the Lord teach you this summer?”

The words taunted me from the page as I filled out my post-project staff evaluation.  I felt a wave of insecurity wash over me as I realized I hadn’t gotten some big revelation this summer.  Maybe I didn’t pray enough.  Maybe I should have spent more time reading my Bible.

In summers past, the answer to that question has taken some form of “I used to think _________ about God, but this summer He showed me _______________.”  Some new way of seeing a passage of scripture, or some new way of relating to God.

This summer has been full.  I’ve said that in previous posts, but I am confident I’ve never had more things crammed into each day than I had this summer.  I’ve been forced to meet with God… differently.

That’s when it hit me.  I have been relating to God differently this summer.  I’ve gotten some extended time to spend with God, but more importantly I’ve met God in the midst of my life.  I’ve learned (in small, gracious glimpses) what it looks like to be a full-time husband and father and a full-time minister, with a side of full-time follower of Christ.  I’ve also learned how worthless my attempts at ministry are if I am not making any attempts to be a good husband and father.

I’ve learned the spiritual value of sippy cups.  As a dad, the most spiritual thing I did at times this summer was refilling a sippy cup, or crawling on the floor “tackling” my son. In other summers I’ve met with God on my down time.  This summer I found “down time” in the strangest places.  Rocking a boy to sleep, or walking to downtown to buy dinner, or answering emails.  Down time.  I met with God all summer long, and often holding a poopy diaper in my hand.

That, I suppose, is what the Lord taught me this summer.