Have you ever taken a drive or a walk and just wandered aimlessly? You might see a lot of the countryside and you might even discover something new, but when you get home, you don't really get the sense that you have accomplished anything. The drive or walk was nice, but it didn't really take you anywhere you needed to go.
We can spend our summers with our kids wandering aimlessly. When the summer is over, we'll probably have some memories of some fun times and we might have managed to teach our kids a few things, but we won't be able to point to anything big that our kids have learned. If we start our summer without a direction, we'll end it without having gone anywhere.
The key to a successful summer with your kids is to create your own road map for your time together. Now, don't get me wrong. I'm definitely not telling you to overschedule your summer. You also don't need a day-by-day schedule. What you do need is a simple plan for the things you want to accomplish for the summer.
Look at it this way, if you were going to paint a room, you would make a list of the supplies you needed and set aside some time to get it done. You wouldn't just paint the room with a toothbrush and some children's watercolors. Having a plan for your summer -- a road map -- makes it easier for us to teach our kids the things God wants them to know.
Yesterday, I asked you to pray over your kids and your schedules and ask God to reveal to you what He wants you to focus on with your kids this summer. Now, I want you to finish this statement: By the end of the summer, I want my kids to know ________________.
My statement for the summer is: By the end of the summer, I want my kids to know that God created each person with special gifts and talents to use for Him. Our summer is going to focus on the fact that God made each of them unique and not only should we be ourselves, but we should value others because God made them unique, too.
So, now that you have a focus for your summer, spend some time today asking God to show you how to teach that idea to your children. You might be saying, I'm not creative enough to do this or I don't know where to start. God is simply waiting for you to ask. He offers wisdom to everyone who asks for it. James 1:5 says "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." Ask Him to point out everyday moments where you can teach your kids and to show you bigger, more planned events where you can create moments to teach your kids.
Tomorrow, we'll look at how to create some of those moments, and on Friday we'll make sure we aren't so focused on the big things we have planned that we miss the little, everyday moments that God provides. But, today, spend some more time in prayer about your summer. If God hasn't revealed a focus for your summer to you, keep praying about that, too.
Start creating your road map for the summer today.