Keep Kingdom Foremost in Planning Summer Activities
1 Summertime means different things to different persons. For many worldlings, it is a time to ‘plan ahead for the desires of the flesh.’ (Rom. 13:14) Sadly, these usually find that their selfish works do not bring them inner satisfaction and happiness. On the other hand, God’s people find the summer months filled with fine theocratic activities that do bring them much spiritual and physical refreshment. However, to make the most of our opportunities during warmer weather requires careful planning.
2 First on the list of activities this summer there are the “Kingdom Truth” District Conventions. Have you made definite plans to attend, arranging for transportation and accommodations, if necessary? You must make haste because the conventions begin this month. In your convention plans, can you include someone in the congregation needing assistance in getting to the convention? This may be a fine way to get better acquainted with a brother or sister you may not know so well. Also, you will likely meet up with old acquaintances at the convention. Would you like to spend time with them? Why not plan to work together in field service following the Friday afternoon session?
3 Have you been looking forward to a vacation for yourself and your family? This will no doubt allow you to “rest up a bit” so you can return to your normal routine with renewed vigor and enthusiasm. (Mark 6:31) While being conscious of the need for relaxation, never forget what makes for genuine happiness and contentment—our spirituality. (Matt. 5:3) Arrange to keep your own spirituality and that of your family at a high level during the summer. How might this be done?
4 Traveling to some scenic location often affords a refreshing change where you can enjoy the creative handiwork of Jehovah. This, in itself, can inspire greater appreciation for our Creator. But when this setting is combined with reading the Bible or Bible literature, what a deep impression this can make on our heart and mind and that of our children! (Ps. 19:1-10) So, whatever you do, be sure to take along ample supplies of spiritual food for the entire family and remember to use it daily.
5 Additionally, many brothers have found that the most memorable vacation experiences were enjoyed when they attended meetings or shared in field service in that area with the local brothers and sisters. They have thus ‘widened out their hearts’ resulting in a greater appreciation and love for the ‘whole association of the brothers.’ (2 Cor. 6:11; 1 Pet. 2:17) Some have arranged to auxiliary pioneer with congregations needing assistance in covering their territory. Other families have made plans to work unassigned territory for two or three weeks or longer. They report that the time thus spent strengthened their family ties and brought them closer to Jehovah as they learned to rely on him fully in unfamiliar circumstances. They returned to their home congregations cherishing happy memories and unforgettable experiences in finding people thirsting for Bible knowledge. (If you would like to share in this work, please review the Society’s letter to all congregations dated January 1, 1982.)
6 Elders, be alert to plan for summer activities. With children being out of school consider their needs when arranging field service during the week. If various servants will be away, others should be assigned to handle meeting parts, service arrangements and care for other matters. If a book study location will be temporarily unavailable then the householder should notify the conductor in advance so that other arrangements will be made.
7 Keep the Kingdom foremost as you plan ahead for this summer’s activities. Anticipate a spiritually rich and rewarding time, and look to our heavenly Father for his blessing.—Prov. 16:3.