A note from Jake Vaden

School is out or ending shortly, summer is arriving, upcoming vacations, camps for the kids, home projects, etc. It seems that summer is theoretically a time of respite and a change of pace in the direction of slowing down, but as I look to my summer calendar it seems to be going in the other direction! The frantic pace of life can lead to some dangerous results if we are not careful. Dallas Willard famously stated, “Hurry is the great enemy of spiritual life in our day.” I hope that you enjoy this summer and have great things planned. I also hope there can be some time and margin this summer where you can slow down and connect with God in meaningful ways.

I love this statement from scholar Tom Wright, “It is only when we slow down our lives when we can catch up to God.” Seems contradictory, does it not? Jesus’ life seemed to be quite busy: the travel, teaching, healing, training, etc. Jesus also models the importance of slowing down like here, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5:16). Despite the hustle of figuring out where your kids are hanging while you are at work, getting to that yard project you’ve been putting off, the vacation you’re about to take, or whatever this summer looks like for you, I hope that we all can intentionally take some time to connect with God. Let us follow Jesus’ example to get away to some quiet places this summer and pray. It is the few months of the year we can truly enjoy being outside here in our area! Have fun this summer but do not forget to take a breath.

Jake Vaden
Family Pastor | Hope City Church