Holidays and Holy Days
If I’m honest, I’m still learning how to handle holidays. They can be wonderful opportunities to rest, enjoy quality time with family and have a bit of fun. They provide a good opportunity to stop and have a break and that’s something we all need. We should receive our holidays as a gift from the LORD and thank him.
But I’ve found that holidays can be dangerous too. The problem is they disrupt my routine in bad ways as well as good. I work less and that’s a good thing because unlike God I need to rest, but unless I’m careful I also read the Bible less, pray less and go to church less. That’s a big problem because God has given us these things to sustain us in the faith. For example, Jesus said “Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4). Reading Scripture is like eating food. We have to do it regularly because it nourishes us for the day. If we don’t consume God’s word often (in our daily lives and at Church on Sundays) we’ll starve ourselves spiritually.
I know this not only because the Bible tells me so, but also from personal experience. Whenever I neglect the bible, prayer and Church I invariably feel less close to God and less motivated to serve him. Perhaps you feel like that too?
Holidays shouldn’t be a time from us to ‘have a break from God’. In fact, our word ‘holiday’ is derived from ‘holy day’ and the idea that there should be days set apart for, and devoted to, God. So will you join me in endeavouring to make our holidays ‘holy days’? Will you, like me, make every effort not to forget God, but rather put him right at the centre of whatever we’re doing over the Summer. There are some things we cannot survive without, like food, air and water. We wouldn’t dream of taking a break from those things. So let’s not take a break from God.
Revd. Matt Williams
Vicar, St. Paul’s Church
P.S. Martin Luther once said, “I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.” This was from a man who translated the entire Bible into German, wrote dozens of Christian classics, and ignited the Reformation!
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