More and more people are planning exciting summer vacations this year that consist of doing ... absolutely nothing. That’s the conclusion drawn from a recent article published in The Christian Science Monitor. Instead of traveling to exotic locations where each day is filled with activity, a growing number of people are choosing to spend their down time resting by the pool, in a hammock, or even just on the front porch, so they can be as idle as possible.
A major reason for this trend is the constantly connected, wired, nature of modern life. The incredible technological progress in recent years has made it tougher to disconnect. The result may be that many people find themselves living stressed and frenetic lives. Even those who might not feel frazzled by technology may be dealing with other concerns about taking a break – such as not having the financial means to do something special, or not having someone to share a get-away with. In light of this, a vacation that consists of peaceful relaxation – often leaving one’s electronic devices or daily routines behind – sounds appealing!
Such a vacation, however, may reflect a greater overall desire among many people for more stillness in life. Indeed, if more stillness were found, we would each naturally feel more refreshed, whether we have the luxury of taking a vacation or not.
The Bible exhorts us to “be still, and know that I am God” (Psalms 46:10). How often does modern life allow us simply to be still and feel God’s presence? So, a vacation can actually be a time for this stillness – to revel in God’s love and adore God’s goodness. This is a prayer that requires no great amount of mental effort or even a big investment of time. All that is involved is the simple acknowledgment of God. Truly, to know God is the most refreshing thing we can do.
In “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” Mary Baker Eddy describes a kind of spiritual retreat. She writes of a “retreat from the belief of pain or pleasure in the body into the unchanging calm and glorious freedom of spiritual harmony” (pp. 247-248). Tuning in to spiritual intuition, instead of routine ruminations about materialism or the body, naturally brings healing. It revives, recharges, and recuperates. It illuminates the present reality of Soul, God. It reveals perpetual beauty and peace – the consciousness of spiritual bliss. This deep awareness of God, of Soul, is the best retreat imaginable.
So, if you’re one of many embarking on a vacation this summer, you have the special opportunity simply to enjoy God’s love in your life. What an uplifting and joyous vacation it will be!
From an editorial in the Christian Science Sentinel.