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Vacation Me

08 Oct Spiritual Formation | Comments Off on Vacation Me
Vacation Me
 

“It’s an All-Time Gig.”

After a handful of part time and seasonal jobs in High School and College, Arrowhead was my first full time job. I absolutely love serving at camp.  Arrowhead has been my home for over 10 years now and I thoroughly enjoy the combination of ministry, work and family.  It is all encompassing and I would not trade it for anything.

Like most camp ministries, however, my position has been more of an “all-time” job than a full-time job. It’s a reality that has been and continues to be a good thing for the most part. But in my ever-present, never-ending context, it is very difficult to “turn it off.”  It is hard to stop when it is right in front of you… and you like what you do.

Out of Sight, Out of Mind… Sort of

I am always surprised though, at how much I also love getting away from camp.  I tend to forget how entrenched I can become when I’m on-site.  On a recent ministry trip out of town, I spent two days visiting friends, reconnecting with ministry acquaintances, making new contacts and getting some down time to think and write.  Those two days were extremely reinvigorating.  Being off-site gave me clarity, focus and inspiration for the ministry I had temporarily left behind.

On the second morning, I sat back in my chair with a cup of coffee in hand and thought, “Why is this place so different from camp?  I feel like a different person here.  It feels almost like a vacation.” Not only did I feel that I had a different perspective, I felt as if I was a different version of myself – “Vacation Ben.”

I like “Vacation Ben”.  Of course, I was not on vacation, I was working.  The difference was that this trip had created a healthy element to my rhythms of life.  It was not “Vacation Me”… it was “Healthy Me”.  A me that felt freedom to disengage, a me that gained perspective with some distance, a me that had margin and space to rest and refresh.

Healthy Me, and You

Where is the “healthy you”?  Have you see him lately?  Is she swamped with the work of the ministry?  Is he unable to work on the ministry because he is so entrenched in it?

I encourage you to grab some time “off-site.”  Maybe that means a few days away, maybe that’s something a bit shorter.  Perhaps it is a morning off with a cup of coffee and a blank notepad.  It could even be a short walk across the street from the church building.

I trust an offsite working-vacation is just what you need.

Benefits of Being Off Site

  • Less distraction leads to more direction.
  • It can be difficult to take in the big picture if you’re so close you only see brush strokes.
  • It’s easier to dream big when that’s the only thing on your agenda for the day.
  • Organizing, strategizing and creating to-do-lists is always more fun when you have to wait until you get back to get started.
  • There’s some truth to, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder”.
  • It’s a healthy practice to work “on the ministry”, instead of always “in the ministry”

Take a moment to look over your calendar for this week. Where’s the opportunity to step away, go off-site and gain some refreshment and perspective? Whether it’s a quite hour in a coffee shop or a half-day spent walking through the Fall Foliage, this week may afford the perfect opportunity to find refreshment and perspective by getting out of the trenches.

Ben Myers
Camp Director at Arrowhead Bible Camp
Ben Myers has served as the Camp Director at Arrowhead Bible Camp in Brackney, PA for the past 13 years. Arrowhead is a ministry committed to discipleship through its programs for adults with developmental disabilities, missions opportunities for youth groups, and mentoring of High School and College students. Ben also teaches as an adjunct professor at Lancaster Bible College and holds degrees from Cairn University and Baptist Bible Seminary.