Holidays give us time to reflect, says Canon Stephen Bradberry

Halifax Minster
Halifax Minster

Many people will be enjoying a break during these summer months. Rest and recreation are important to us all.

This year is particularly warm as we bask in the unusually hot sunshine. The heatwave is too hot for many!

For some people, it’s enough to just escape from the ‘normal’ – to get away from the alarm clock and the daily routine. Many look for rest and a time to just ‘chill-out.’ Others look for adventure or travel – caving, skydiving or bungee-jumping or maybe exploring new places or experiencing a foreign culture.

Yet, not everyone has the opportunity to go away on holiday. Those out of work or with caring responsibilities can’t just pack-up and head for the airport. I’m always inspired by those community groups and churches that run holiday clubs or days out for the elderly and those with disabilities: this gives many the opportunities to do something different.

Holidays give us time to reflect on our own lives. Being away, having time to communicate with others can make it easier for us to see things in perspective. Personal concerns are not as big when we make time to pray through what’s bothering us. God is there whether we are on a windy cliff top, travelling to new destinations, watching the waves break or just sunbathing in the back yard. Often we return refreshed and with renewed vigour.

So, your holiday isn’t really an escape from daily life; it’s more of a chance to look at things through different lenses. We should all try to take time for rest and recreation and pray that God may become real to us in our lives during this time. Whether it’s in some exotic location or just in the park or back garden, he’ll be ready, waiting to communicate with us.