Summer Schedules & Jesus
Does anyone else have trouble holding down a routine during the summer?
During the school year, my schedule is set. I get up, get my family ready to go. Kiss my husband, drop the kids off at school, and then settle in with a cup of coffee, breakfast, and my Bible. It gets my day off to the perfect start. Then I usually workout, take a shower, and am at my desk by 9 am.
Queue summer vacation and I get lost in the shuffle. By August, I’ll have it down. But May and June? It’s a lost cause. The transition gets me every year. And it’s not just one transition, it’s the constant changes.
We abandon our school schedule, just to start a flurry of activities. Summer vacations, holidays, Vacation Bible School, fun summer activities, late nights, early mornings. It’s June 1st and I’m already confused about what day of the week it is. We had a four day weekend that seemed to stretch out forever (which was awesome), but then the week started on Tuesday and I feel like I blinked and missed everything that’s happened since then.
Am I alone in this?
Does anyone else feel the shifting of the seasons as profoundly as this?
My usual morning routine has gone up in smoke, and I’m struggling to get in a new grove. And I know that it’s a lost cause, because next week’s schedule will be different than this weeks. And the week after that will be different again. And the week after that. And the week after that. It’s going to be a long month. Fun, but busy.
It seems like most of my summer tasks are “Jesus-focused.” They are all good things. This week I’ve spent countless hours decorating for VBS. I’ve been spending time with my kids, cleaning the house, being a mom and wife. Later this month we are going on a camping trip with our youth group, and starting a new Bible study at church. Jesus is a huge part of our lives.
Deuteronomy 6:5-9 says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” (ESV)
We strive to live that way.
But I’ll be honest, I miss my one-on-one time with Jesus.Does the transition from school to summer throw your morning routine off kilter? Click To Tweet
3 Ways To Spend Time With Jesus
(When Your Schedule Has Gone Out The Window)
Instead of giving up on my Jesus time, I’ve spent the last month looking for opportunities to work one-on-one time with Jesus into my busy summer days. Here are the top three ways I’ve found to include Him in my day, but I’d love to hear your tips in the comments as well.
1.) Take A Time Out (or ten)
While I believe it is important to make time for God’s Word, to plan it into my day, the shifting summer days makes that difficult. So when things don’t go as planned, rather than going through the day frustrated, I look for opportunities to step away with Jesus. When the kids are fed, the house work is done, and I find myself with a few minutes to spare, I can grab my Bible and retreat to a quiet room, or even out to the picnic table for a few minutes of one-on-one time with Jesus. And even if it’s interrupted, I can go back to it throughout the day. Any time I have a spare moment and am ready to collapse, I can choose to collapse with my Bible in hand instead of my phone. So even if I don’t get to start my day off with Jesus, I can still spend a few moments with Him.
2.) Pause to Pray
Earlier this week, I was at the pool watching my kids swim and visiting with a sweet friend from church. She received a text message with wonderful news and right there at the picnic table, mid conversation, surrounded by shouting children, dozens of on-lookers, and wet towels, she dropped everything to pour out her thankfulness to Jesus. She bowed her head and prayed her thanksgiving aloud, praising our great God. I’ll be honest, I was proud to be sitting next to her. Her heart for Jesus, her lack of hesitation, blessed me beyond measure.
I spend a lot of time at the pool each summer. We have a family pass and as long as we are home and the kids have kept up on their chores, we go almost daily. I usually take a book to read, but I don’t think it ever occurred to me to use that noisy situation as a quiet time. But my friend did. And I am so thankful for her. My summer pool days will be brighter because of her example.
3.) Multitasking Moments
This is something I picked up back when my twins were infants. I had one daughter that never slept… for five years. That season wasn’t quiet for me at all. In order to survive, I had to learn to multitask my quiet time. I would prop my Bible up in the kitchen and read God’s Word while I was cooking supper. I would ponder Scripture while I was washing the dishes. Sure, it’s easier to think when the house is quiet, but multitasking your quiet time is better than skipping it altogether. Thankfully, I’m out of that season, but I still find those multitasking options beneficial on summer days when things seem to quickly spin out of control.
I went through some health issues last month where I couldn’t read or focus well, so I used the BibleGateway app on my phone to listen to God’s Word with my eyes closed. I don’t know that I caught all of it, but I was yearning for God’s Word and something is better than nothing. Audio Bibles have opened up a whole new avenue of multitasking our quiet time. My husband has a 45 minute commute to work each day and uses that time to listen to God’s Word. I still prefer to hold my Bible and read God’s Word. I love to highlight, underline, take notes, reread. There is just something about soaking God’s Word up off the pages that draws me in, but I know there is a place for audio Bibles.Are your busy summer days causing you to miss your one-on-one time with Jesus? Click To Tweet
A Jesus-Filled Summer
How do you keep Jesus at the center of your summer days? Not just with your plans, but with your quiet time as well? Is this something you struggle with or do you have tips to share? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!
This is a such a great read! I am a new SAHM and I used to have my quiet time first thing when I got into the office in the morning. I’m kind of using the same concept now. I will set my computer up on the kitchen table for my work at home, get him occupied eating breakfast and watching a show or playing, then have my quiet time at the “office.” So far it’s worked okay unless our schedule gets wacky. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this!
Thanks, Edie! I think the key is finding what works best for us at whatever season of life we’re in.
All I know is that our Lord Jesus never takes a vacation!
Yes! And He is faithful, even when we’re not.
I can honestly say that I can’t identify from the mom/summer viewpoint because that’s never been my life. But being retired with 24/7 husband and part time caretakers for my folks, well, I’m sorta mom in reverse. Time can get away from me. You make edifying points, useful for any season of life.
Peggy, every season is different and brings it’s own challenges. Praying for you today.
Heather, you have some great ideas! When I was young, I used to be very set in a schedule. When I got married, had my two girls and began homeschooling that all got thrown out the window. Ha, ha. Now I take care of my 6 year old grandson during the summer. I am trying to not stress on stuff that doesn’t get done, because my time with him is so much more important. On days we are at home, not out doing activities, I require he take a quiet time. He goes into our spare bedroom upstairs where he sometimes spends the night and he can play with toys, look at books and so on. I make it an hour, so I can use that time to either get a little housework done, spend time with God or work on writing or the blog. He’s pretty good about staying up there. I agree with the idea that we can be having time with God even as we are making supper or doing other things. Going to the park, the pool or a play land at McDonald’s is a great way to have the kids occupied. I always take books or writing stuff with me to work on while he plays. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Thanks for stopping in, and for sharing your encouragement, Amy!
he never takes a vacation so we should make sure to include him every day
So true, Terri. However, knowing what we should do, doesn’t always make it easy.
I am a morning person and rise early no matter how much sleep I’ve had, which is really exhausting some days lol. Luckily though, I am still able to get up during the Summer months before my children, on most days, and spend my time with God. Now the rest of my day is hectic and I feel out of whack, but I try to remind myself it is only ten weeks lol!
What a blessing, Heather! I have never been a morning person. I can make myself wake up early, but I can’t always think straight or concentrate enough to read God’s Word if I try to dig in too soon.
Oh Heather, this post is right on point. We always have a choice to make don’t we? Will we make time for Jesus, or will we let the lack of time overwhelm us. This Summer I feel the need to let loose and have some fun with my family. I have a few more days of school left for my kiddos then it will be a free for all. Praying you have the best Summer ever Heather!
Thanks, Natalie!! I pray you do as well. May Jesus be your center.
Now that my children are grown, it is less of an issue. However, I taught for 25 years. My whole life until now has been lived on a school schedule. This is my first non-academic summer so I am looking forward to it!
How wonderful, Alice! My mom is a teacher and she always makes the most of her summers, but the school dates still define them for sure. Enjoy your summer and may Jesus fill your days.
I love this post. I am actually in a season where I feel like I’m finally getting a routine under control. However, scheduling God in to even a structured routine can be difficult. Thank you for the tips and the gracious reminders.
Yes! Tiffany, I so relate. Trying to fit Jesus in is always difficult. I finally came to a point where I had to plan my schedule around my quiet time. I picked the best spot for it and moved everything else. I know that’s not always possible, but it really helped me. At first I was worried I wouldn’t have time for everything else and even skipped it when I was super busy, but the more I stuck with it, the more it helped me focus my days. It can still be a struggle though. Especially when I don’t have a routine.
Summer schedules are different but we fall into a good routine. I have such found memories of summer and want my children to enjoy this season as well. After breakfast it’s time to play before it gets blistering hot and then during the hottest hours we settle in do eat and do some schoolwork (ideally), then it’s off to play again!
That’s awesome, Kristi! It’s great to have a routine. While I love all of the activities we have this month, and will love every moment, I’m looking forward to July when we’ll settle into a more regular summer routine.
My kids are older now but I remember the frustration of losing my routine. Finding my one on one time with Jesus just took a bit of creative thinking at a different time if the day then I wanted. Thanks.
Yes! Flexibility and determination are so important.
We homeschool and even though I have fewer scheduled things to do in the summer, I totally understand what you are saying. I have to work hard to get a new schedule going that INCLUDES spending time in the Word. Thanks for letting me know that I’m not the only one!
Thanks for stopping in, Karen! It’s always nice to know we aren’t alone.
I love this! Such simple and wonderful ideas to pray during the crazy times.
Thanks for your encouragement, Hannah. May you have a fabulous, Jesus-filled summer!
Oh, I’m feeling the pull already, Heather, and our summer break hasn’t even started yet. You reminded me to use the audio feature on my bible app to soak up God’s Word. Something is better than nothing!
Amen, Marva! While I prefer to read the words myself, you are so right something IS better than nothing and the audio feature is a blessing.
I love the idea of the timeout. So often we forget that amidst the chaos, taking time away is the best way to refresh and come back stronger.
Amen! Too often I think if I miss something, the opportunity is lost, and I can’t get it back, but that simply isn’t true. I can take a timeout with Jesus any time.