Summer: Vacating Stress: Embracing Renewal

Tranquility is a rare commodity in today’s world, but it is a prized treasure when obtained.

Solitude is a close companion. It refreshes our core need for care.

Three important areas of our human needs ~ security, identity, and belonging ~ all seem to be attacked at some point in life.

Whether we are shaken by a sudden loss of job (security), misunderstood or slandered for our motives (identity) or, need to adjust to the sad end of an important relationship (belonging) ~ all these can potentially throw us into high-level stress and destroy tranquillity.

Fear and anxiety are culprits of destruction. They work relentlessly in our thinking, causing fatigue of mind and body.

A change from a stress-related environment to relaxation seems the answer for reducing such attacks. It is why we vacate with anticipation and plan out our enjoyment. Recreational activities are known to unwind the stress and help in that regard.

When we look to recapture moments of calm and comfort, finding a quiet place of sanctuary is important: it helps us find our perspective away from distractions.

Solitude, the quiet nurturing for the soul, is desired to renew and restore emotional burn out, weariness of body and helps bring us into a peaceful heart. It is certainly easier to move forward with decisions when we are at peace.

More importantly, renewal is available at our deepest spiritual level when our authentic core is able to learn to hope and rest. Hope is really a form of expectant waiting; often expressed in the desire for needed change. It gives us the strength for future challenges we may face.

The Bible prophet, Isaiah, spoke of this renewing strength in waiting. It is the work of hope meant to bring us into peace. It comes in quiet contemplation of God, a quieting of racing minds and bodies that learn to surrender anxiety and exchange it for genuine faith.

It is in part a process of learning to release our control issues. The willingness to let it all go in surrendered humility.

“Waiting is, by nature something only the humble can do with grace.”

“Even youths will faint and be weary,
and the young will fall exhausted;
but those who wait for the Lord will renew their strength,
they shall mount up with wings like eagles,
they shall run and not be weary,
they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:30-31

Summer lends itself to our vitality by the very nature of the season: the infusion of all her natural beauty. It is invigorating to be soaking in the fresh air.

Walking on the beach, dangling feet or swimming at a pool, or simply gathering friends and family in a backyard BBQ, helps us to unwind and renew. Who hasn’t enjoyed cooling down on a humid, hot day?

Let’s enjoy summer: the vivid colors of butterflies and sweet scents of roses: the many textures of earth and sky: all the great outdoor activities which call us to attention to be fully alive. It is a healthy use of our time and energies.

Invite tranquility and solitude as welcomed companions ~ We need to be still and just breathe. May we ever be grateful for a life of simple pleasures. In quiet times, our heart will seek to make its longing known.