The Summertime Sun

June 30, 2010 in News

I observed everything going on under the sun, and really, it is all meaningless—like chasing the wind. Ecclesiastes 1:14 (NLT)

As you lounge by the pool under a warm summer sun, consider this: “everything going on under the sun…is like chasing the wind.” Perish the thought!

A mind is a terrible thing to waste...

“Be ready in season and out!” Paul said. Fruit-bearing is typically “out-of-season” in summer for those of us engaged in ministry, but what a great mistake it is to sit “under the sun” simply “chasing the wind!” Surely we won’t look back and say, “It is all meaningless!”

But never forget this fact—fall approaches!

Every year fall hits like a bomb, followed by two more seasons of tumultuous growth. Every year those seasons tear apart the seams of our fellowship with burgeoning growth, and how disorienting it is! Unprepared brothers and sisters are like sitting ducks on opening day of duck season.

Experienced Xenos veterans know how to handle summer, because they realize:

  • Xenos Summer Institute is coming, which is an incredible opportunity to research and investigate other ministries and get answers to pressing questions. (That is, for those who already know what questions to ask.)
  • The need to consolidate relationships neglected by three seasons of high-activity. “They’ll know you by your love,” Jesus said, but ministry activity spreads love relationships very thin. If we don’t reinvigorate those long-term love relationships, our strength will grow weak.
  • Baptisms are coming soon, and there are young Christians or borderline non-Christians floating around who still need to understand what Christianity means so they can stand up and testify!
  • Who are you, do you know anymore? The push and pull of ministry often leaves us confused about exactly who we are, after so many changes have taken place. Why not try to grasp your new identity in Christ this summer? It will change the way you approach things this fall!

A great read for Jesus Freaks who love the summer! Click the book and read about the Freak who recommends it!

But here is the sure way to avoid “chasing the wind” this summer—there’s nothing that beats a pool, a beer, and a good book! What books are you reading this summer?

Consider some of these books:

  • The Problem of Wineskins, by Howard Snyder.
  • Stealing Sheep, by Chadwick
  • Master Plan of Evangelism, by Coleman.
  • Master Plan of Discipleship, by Coleman.
  • Reclaiming the Center, by Erickson.
  • Church Planting Movements, by Garrison.
  • Temperaments and the Christian Faith, by O’Hallesby.
  • The Iliad, by Homer.
  • Too Busy Not to Pray, by Hybels.
  • The Normal Christian Life, by Chairman Nee.
  • Generous Orthodoxy, by McLaren (for all you Emergents out there).
  • Spontaneous Expansion of the Church, by Roland Allen.
  • The Fight, by John White.
  • Out of the Silent Planet, Perelandria, That Hideous Strength, by C.S. Lewis.
  • The Great Divorce, by C.S. Lewis.
  • The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, by Gibbons.
  • Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens, and Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe for the Next 1,500 Years, by Jenkins.
  • The Edge of Evolution: the Search for the Limits of Darwinism, by Behe.

To paraphrase Peter in 2 Peter 1:8,

“For if these are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Any other recommendations.

8 responses to The Summertime Sun

  1. Thanks for this practical article Keith.

  2. Yes, thanks. It’s so easy for me to let my mind wander in things that really don’t matter! I’m so excited about the summer institute!

  3. Some of my favs are listed for sure. Gotta love the classics. Also an excellent time to brush up on your Greek. :)

    •Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens, and Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe for the Next 1,500 Years, by Jenkins. This book looks great. I just read an awesome review by Olsen.

    Here’s a link to the book review: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2010/june/22.51.html

  4. Good food for thought to stimulate more food for thought, life and love.

    indeed, lets make the most of our time for the days are evil.

  5. My summertime reading suggestion is Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. It is one of my favorite ‘religious’ books.

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