Word of the Week

Summer, How I love Thee

Such was the sentiment of my soul as a child growing up. What is better than summer?

Not waking up until I had to, fun field trips with friends, chasing the ice cream man down the street hoping to make it in time to get that red snow cone, going swimming in the YMCA pool with friends and neighbors.

And, even as I grew up, I loved summers in a similar way. Beginning when I was 16, they were always about new experiences: traveling, driving on my own to visit long-lost friends, and  reading around the pool. My favorite part was always a trip to a beach. Though my family is not made up of beach loving people, by college and then graduate school, I had found friends who liked the beach life as much as I did so to make a road trip there when possible (though these trips would always find me with unwanted sunburns . . . ). Summers memories often were the highlight of my year.

But, now as I grown-up with a full-time job it is a lot harder to recite: "Summer, how I love thee!"

I have yet to get the pool. The thought of even getting into a bathing suit is depressing.

There have been no beach trips (though one is coming up soon which is very exciting).

The joy of being out of obligation for a season is gone; for responsiblity is year round now and forevermore.

And, in the world of church work, it is a slow time. Folks are on vacations. It is hard to build the energy and momentum from one week to another. Many come to church on lower energy than normal (is it the heat or what?).  Giving is normally down in the summer as trips take people away and forget to keep their pledging up-to-date.

While I wish there was time to enjoy my favorite parts of this season, the part I keep in mind, especially as it relates to the church is: this too shall pass.

Because really, there is no need to rush through life not enjoying the moments that you can when you can. Before we know it, fall will be upon us calling for sweaters and shoes with socks everyday (my least favorite). In church life, there will be new challenges including the urgency of making sure that things are done and done well before the end of the year.

The summer is a great time to plan ahead and get things completed early so that the fall doesn't come to bite you. The summer is the time to update the website or clean out the church office or do that stack of filing long gone undone. Important to tend to, but not as fun! 

I still keep driving by the community pools with folks enjoying them with a little bit of envy.

Maybe my new pastor's creed should be, "Summer, how I used to love thee!" And, "Fall come soon!"