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Categorized | From the Pulpit

Vacation Dad

Pastor Dylan Mason 

Frost Creek Church

15671 Algoma Ave. NE

Cedar Springs, MI 49319

I don’t know about you, but when the snow hits, I start looking for a vacation. I start looking for sunshine. Any time you can get out of town to head somewhere warm and sunny is nice, but leaving behind the cold, wind, snow, and slush to go somewhere warm and sunny just takes the cake. My mentor just recently came home from such a trip. When I asked him how it was, he told me the weather was just okay, but it was still a great time because he got to be with his family. He then shared with me some wisdom that had been reinforced in his life while he was there that has really been stuck in my head. He said, “Anyone can be the best version of themselves while they’re on vacation. Anyone can be a good parent or spouse for a week in Florida. I don’t want to be that. I don’t want to be vacation Dad or vacation husband. I want to be that all the time. What really makes a good dad or good husband is the stuff in between the vacations. It’s the day in, day out, sacrificial service and love of my family.”

I’m reminded of Hebrews 12:1 that says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” We are called to live this life like running a marathon! Now, I’ve never run a marathon, but I can’t imagine that most people who have, just woke up one day, decided to run a marathon, and just did it! Running a marathon requires months of training and preparation. It starts slow, with baby steps. It requires dedication, perseverance, and unwavering commitment to a lifestyle that allows one to be able to run the race. People training for a marathon adapt their entire lives to their goal. They change their diet, their sleep schedule, their work schedules, and so much more.

There’s a reason that the author relates a life following Jesus to running a race. Each of us can muster up enough motivation to pull up our bootstraps for a week and really run after Jesus. We can get into the word or spend extra time in prayer for a week, but to really experience the fullness of a life spent with Jesus, to be the parent or spouse we are called to be, and to experience the rich and full life that Jesus came to give us, we must approach life with the same mentality as someone training for a marathon. Everything we do must be oriented around running the race marked out for us with Jesus. I hope that even in this short article, you’re encouraged to take baby steps toward running with Jesus. I hope you commit to any kind of baby step, like reading the bible three days a week, or praying ten minutes a day. Don’t be a vacation parent. Don’t be a vacation spouse. Don’t be a vacation Christian. You were created for more! You can do it!

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