Summer is finally here! Go get your barbeque ready and your golf clubs polished. Wash your car and make sure you go out and buy some new shorts because, if you’re like me, your old ones probably don’t fit anymore. You can thank your need for a new summer wardrobe on the winter months of hibernation and the time spent in front of your TV with a steady diet of chips and pop.

However, now you have a new start! A new rhythm is to be enjoyed. It’s time to get a healthy lifestyle back. With all the busyness in your life, do not forget to do one thing this summer—enjoy it. Yes, enjoy it with your family. Enjoy it with your friends. Just plain enjoy it!

One of the best things about writing articles like this is that they remind me of what’s important and help to clarify what are the central things that need to be prioritized in my life. In this way, writing for SEVEN is very therapeutic for me.

While thinking about what to write in this “summer” issue I quickly realized how much I wasted last summer. For me, last summer was one I did not fully enjoy. The reason was simple. I invested my precious time (and it is precious) in being too busy at work that I neglected my soul. I allowed outside pressures and work demands command my time and steal my joy away from my family, friends and from having some plain old fun in the sun. Looking back on last summer I realized that I won’t ever get that time back again.

Let’s face it, there’s always plenty of work to be done and there are always outside demands on our time, but sunny, warm days are not a given—especially in Canada. Before you know it, you will be shovelling your car out of snowdrifts.

So, take this from me—enjoy the good summer days when you can. However, remember this one thing—in order to be in the position of receiving God’s blessings that are waiting for you this summer you must plan ahead for them. We read in Proverbs 16:3 that we need to:

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”

This verse tells us something very interesting about our lives. Did you notice it? It mentions the word “plans.” In other words, God wants us to make plans. In fact, it is clear that this verse of wisdom is telling us to make prayerful planning so that we know what we can commit to God in order to receive His blessings. So, take some time and make some prayerful plans for yourself, your family and friends regarding how to use your time wisely this summer. Then commit them to God. Both you and God will have a great summer together. That’s the benefit of prayer-based planning.

Go right now. Do not delay. Take time to plan your next few months and then enjoy them. God gives you permission to enjoy your summer. Prepare for a great family vacation or camping trip. Take advantage of our wonderful national parks that are free in celebration of Canada’s 150th birthday! Plan to take time out to enjoy a patio in your city, hit the links or swing some tennis racquets this summer. God wants you to enjoy his blessings waiting for you this summer—you just have to plan the time to embrace all he has in store for you.

COLIN MCCARTNEY is an ordained minister, speaker, and a bestselling author. He is also the founder of UrbanPromise Toronto and now leads Connect Ministries in Toronto where he, his wife Judith, and their two children reside. For information in booking Colin as a speaker, please visit www.connectministries.org.


THE ARTICLE ABOVE WAS FEATURED IN THE JULY 2017 ISSUE OF SEVEN MAGAZINE. 

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