Today's Devotions

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Showcase: Patience

  • For Your Patience and Your Kindness: Hosanna by Kirk Franklin +

    The angels bow down at the thought of You The darkness gives way to the light for You The price Read More
  • Fruit of Patience by Sylvia Gunter +

    Beloved child of God, listen to your Father's heart and his ways for you in Galatians 5:22-23,25. "But the fruit Read More
  • 1

stores1#1043. Taking church off in the summer.

Wait, what?

No. That can't be true. Even typing those words should have caused little mini bolts of lighting to come down from heaven and strike my keyboard, rendering it useless. (Probably didn't happen because I wrote this on a Mac, and that's what God uses too.)

But girl, just like Milli Vanilli warned us all those years ago, you know it's true. I wanted to say "boys and girls" in that sentence, but you see my dilemma. I had a Vanilli opportunity, and I never pass one of those up. Especially when I can use that lip synching, international dance troupe to prove a point that is indeed correct.

We tend to take church off in the summer.

I swear I don't remember my dad ever dismissing anyone in his church at the end of the spring with a sermon called, "See you in the fall." But sometimes I think that's what we hear in our heads. The weather gets warmer. The days get brighter, and around Memorial Day, we pretend the pastor is giving us a pass for the next few months.

Why does this happen? I'm glad you asked:

4 reasons we take church off in the summer

1. Guest speakers.
As a guest speaker myself, this one pains me, but I know it happens. You wake up, it's a beautiful day, you start getting ready for church and then remember, "Oh yeah, Pastor Tom is out on vacation this week. They're having a guest speaker. I'm pretty sure the Bible says something about not needing to attend church when there's a guest speaker." And you're done. There will be no church that day. But when you skip, you don't know what you're missing. Maybe this will be the first and only time the phrase "Booty, God, Booty" is said from the stage. I'm just putting that out there. Could happen. Ask the people at NorthRidge Church in Michigan.

2. You go on vacation.
I can probably count on one hand the number of times I've gone to church while on vacation at the beach during the summer. That's horrible, right? Yeah, I assumed so. Thanks for verifying that. Some people love that, though. I have friends who enjoy finding a random, one-off church experience and wrapping that into their vacation memories. Or they hold a church service wherever they're staying with their family. Both are legitimate options. And if you're away on vacation, that is actually a good reason to miss going to your home church during summer.

3. You throw the "God is everywhere in nature" card.
What a beautiful day. What a warm, fun day this Sunday morning has already turned into. I'd like to go to church today, but you know, I don't want to miss God's glorious sunshine. It's too pretty today to go to church. Plus, God is everywhere, you know? He made it all. He made the ocean and the mountains and the lake that Sully has a ski boat on. Today, instead of being stuck in church, I will worship God in all his majesty. At the lake.

4. You're still recovering from volunteering at VBS.
Maybe you had a rough VBS week. Maybe you need to decompress from the "glitter incident." Maybe there are still a few other people who were a little appalled at how competitive you got with decorating your room. Maybe the animal you brought in on performance night bit you. And, let's be honest, it's not easy getting over a camel bite. Things will be better in the fall. Lay low. Remember you did it for the kids.

Will this post dramatically impact church attendance this summer? Probably. I'd like to think we're going to see a direct correlation, and church attendance is about to spike. But, if it doesn't, there must be some other reason for taking the summer off from church that I didn't mention.

What's your reason for missing church during the summer?

Reflections to Consider

  • 1

Publications

  • 1

Music

  • 1

Audio & Video

  • 1

Favorites

  • The Lives of the Mystics-an interview with Emilie Griffin +

    An interview with Emilie Griffin—author of the new book Wonderful and Dark Is This Road—on the lives of Mystics and how they Read More
  • We Shall All Be Reunited by Patty Griffin +

    Where is now my father's familyThat was here so long ago?Sitting 'round the kitchen firesideBrightened by the ruddy glow Read More
  • Doorways into the prayer life by Emilie Griffin +

    Emilie Griffin spoke at a 1999 Renovaré International Conference Read More
  • 1

Hidden Blessings

  • Freedom of Simplicity, Richard Foster +

    In Freedom of Simplicity Foster gently encourages us to see that our identity, our sense of comfort and security must Read More
  • Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster +

    The Path to Spiritual Growth The book on spiritual disciplines. Read More
  • Spiritual Classics, Richard Foster and Emilie Griffiin +

    Selected Readings for Individuals and Groups on the Twelve Spiritual Disciplines Good collection of essays, saints throughout the ages. A Read More
  • Prayer by Richard Foster +

    A prayer Richard Foster uses when beginning a time of contemplation: By the authority of Almighty God, I surround myself Read More
  • 1