Since this is the first official week of summer—and since it’s already a million degrees outside—I thought I’d share some of our kid-friendly, family-friendly, and human-friendly goals for the summer.
I use that word loosely, as we’ve been throwing out anything exceptionally orderly or organized since the middle of May. When I say “goals,” I don’t mean that I plan to climb Everest or learn to play guitar or start a new business or reorganize my entire house or ride a gondola through Venice this summer.
Maybe I shouldn’t even use that word—goals. Honestly, it’s more of a mindset. More of a lifestyle. More a year-round vision that anyone can adapt, no matter your season. It doesn’t matter if you’re still in college, swimming in baby gear, wrangling teenagers, or easing your way into retirement.
These are three simple goals we can actually stick to—my hubby, kids, and I. They mix nicely with the warm summer sun, family bike adventures, and ice-cold popsicles (but also adhere to cooler seasons).
Goal #1: WORSHIP. Contrary to popular opinion, “worship” isn’t limited to 18 minutes on Sunday morning. We can worship all day, everyday, in various ways. That bowl of ripe strawberries? Let’s taste His goodness and thank Him for creating such tasty flavors. That ladybug crawling on her shoulder? Let’s stop and notice the intricate details found in all of God’s unique masterpieces. The adorably wild children messing with your sanity? Thank you JESUS that we get to clean up their messes and be the person they need most. There’s never a lull in God’s handiwork, which is exactly how He designed it. We can worship Him—at the table, in the car, over coffee (especially over coffee)—right where we are.
“I will praise you every day; yes, I will praise you forever.” (Psalms 145:2)
Goal #2: MOVE. Work hard, play hard—right? God created our bodies with the ability to jump and work and play and run. But it’s common in our society to sit. We sit at home and we sit in the car and we sit at work and we sit everywhere. Kids know better though, don’t they? They don’t sit well—which isn’t always a bad thing. Play is powerful, and we big kids could learn a thing or two. Whether we’re serving someone in our community, sweating because of a new project, or swimming with friends—movement is a good thing. Our pastor, Craig Groeschel, often says, “We can’t do everything, but we can do something.” So do the thing, y’all—whatever is on your mind. If you can move, you should.
“For in Him we live and move and exist…” (Acts 17:28)
Goal #3: LOVE. As parents of young children, my husband and I are constantly talking to our kids about what it means to be kind, what it means to share, and what it means to love. But we ALL still have a long way to go, and I’m clinging to the measurement of “imperfect progress” (thanks Lysa Terkeurst). Love God; love people. This was Jesus’ basic marching orders for us, which makes it pretty darn important. The ultimate litmus test is the Golden Rule: “Do to others as you would like them to do to you.” (Luke 6:31) Would you want Jack to say that to you? we ask Hallie. Would you want Hallie to do that to you? We ask Jack. Would you be friends with you? Would you be married to you? we should ask ourselves. It’s not easy to love each other unconditionally, but it’s worth the noble pursuit.
“Let love be your highest goal!” (1 Corinthians 14:1)
We can worship everyday.
We can move everyday.
We can love everyday.
These are goals worth having. These are goals worth living.