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Take time for yourself this summer
By REV. HAZEN C. PARENT

 Summer is when most people's thoughts turn to "getting away from it all!"

 Amid hot days and warm evenings with the kids home from school, it is natural to want to go to the beach, fire up the barbecue, to plan road trips or head to the cottage. Life tends to be a little more carefree, the frantic pace of work and school fades into the background and the beauty and bounty of nature beckons our attention. There is nothing like sunshine to brighten our days.

 One of the Ten Commandments is to honour the Sabbath day and keep it holy. God calls us to find time for rest and set it aside as something special. It is based on the simple premise that only by resting and breaking free from routine and drudgery that we can be restored in body, mind and soul.

 Summer, in this part of the world, is an ideal setting for people to experience a taste of Sabbath rest.

 Jesus set the example when he removed himself from the crowd and found seclusion in order to rebuild physically, mentally and spiritually.

 Scripture tells us he would go away to pray. Recreation is truly being open to re-creation, i.e. creation again.

 As we go to restore ourselves in body and mind, remember the needs of the soul as well.

 Taking a vacation away from home? Try worshiping elsewhere. Every community is different and each church, even among those of the same tradition, offers a new perspective on faith in God.

 Planning to go to the beach Sunday? Begin the day fresh by taking in an early service somewhere.

 Perhaps read a Bible while you sit on the porch. Say a prayer when you see an awesome wonder of creation.

 Take time for yourself. Take time for God too. You just may be surprised to discover a road to better health and peace.

  July 6, 2005  
 
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