Monday, July 9, 2012


In a couple of weeks my family will be vacationing at my favorite spot on earth, a little camp called RKD where I have been spending summers since 1979. It's a throwback in time in that they serve up refreshment the old fashioned way...through fellowship, communal meals, sports, play, beach, an ice cream parlor and a game room with no outlets (except for the one T.V. on the premises used soley to check scores and weather).

Cell phones are not allowed in the public areas of the camp. The aformentioned game room? Wooden bowling, indoor shuffleboard, ping pong, fuseball, a variety of board games and puzzles. There's a craft shop. And the ice cream parlor's most expensive menu item will run you about $5.

They have miles of beachfront property. The moment I arrive I am at peace. I am rested. It's like my whole family does a collective sigh when we step foot on the walkway that parallels Lake Michigan to the front door of the Inn.

And you should see the sunsets. They easily match any Carribean five star hotel view. You can feel the stress melt off your shoulders. There is rest there. We didn't go last year. It was the first time I skipped a year in three decades. I missed it.

A lot.

My kids can't stop talking about it and it seems everything we encounter these days reminds us of it, so we are all the more eager to arrive in twelve days for our scheduled vacation week. I think missing last year is only half the reason we are twice as excited about it this time. The other contributing factor has to be the pace we've been keeping for the past nine months. We've been busier than any other time in our lives. And it's taken a toll.

My husband used to have a wonderful rule of thumb: we will not be out two consecutive weeknights in a row. I cannot remember the last time we were all IN for two consecutive weeknights in a row.

Part of that has to do with the long term health issues of his father and we understand it's a season in time and one that merits exceptions to our rule, but even without those visits our schedule has been incredibly full - and our kids activities are much more limited than most of their friends!

So it begs the question; How do you keep the Sabbath in this day and age?

Because I don't think that command is antiquated - I think it still applies and that it's for our good and God's glory to have a day of rest every week.

My mom says American's wear business on their sleeves like a badge. We use it as bragging rights over our peers - "You think your busy, well wait till you hear my schedule..."

I like having plenty to do. I'd rather have way too much on my plate than be bored. I find it can be easier to plan my day by the tyranny of the urgent than to have several less pressing demands none of which are truly vying for my attention. When the pressure is off the decisions can be harder to make. But when the pressure is off the decisions are made in a different frame of mind. A mind more like Christ's in my case.

I like living near a big city and I like vacationing in a small town. I'm always wondering how to bring more of the small town rest to the big city living without waiting another 360 days to do it.

For the first time in ages, by God's mercy, we've had a couple of days in a row where the pressure has been off schedule wise. So we swam in the pool in our back yard. We watched a PG movie together. We sat around the fire pit. We read books and played board games. We ate outside and laughed at funny stories. We slept in.

We rested.

And you know what? It felt a lot like Camp Arcadia.

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