It’s happening again. I’m at the beach, and a blog about retreat wants to pour out of me. And I’m even here working! I’m not even on vacation, and I haven’t spent a dime. Oh, wait, I did get ice cream last night. (Hey–eating moose tracks is a critical beach tradition.) Because I’m at the beach, I’m realizing again some simple truths to live by.

I feel compelled to recount what we all realize when we’re someplace that speaks to us. So here’s what I know about life, now that I’m away from my normal routine:

Sea or ocean landscape natural background.

  1. Notice the world around you. The beauty of the world is amazing, and it always points me to a Creator. Every sunrise or spray or surf catches my breath and causes me to worship.
  2. Relax. I’m supposed to relax. God built my body to work and to rest, but I usually cheat myself out of rest and work overtime so I can feel successful. For what? I’m only truly happy when I’m rested.
  3. Pray and listen. Time spent praying and listening is actually time invested. It’s what I was made to do. I was made to live in relationship with God. I was made to be like Him, to know Him, and to love Him. All require time. Why am I giving my time away to the things that stress me out?
  4. Cherish. It’s easier to cherish your family on vacation because everyone’s happy, playing together and making memories. I should do that in daily life–take little snapshots in my mind when I’m slaving over dinner or carpooling home from a rainy soccer game. Or dragging bodies out of bed for school. Every moment spent is a moment gone. And they all might be moments that one day, I’d give anything to have back.
  5. Let go. Material things don’t matter. I don’t need a fancy suite, a new beach wardrobe, a jet ski, or a lobster dinner at sunset when I’m here. It’s enough to be here. I know that when I’m sitting with my toes dug into the cool sand, I have a pure heart and a clear mind. I really don’t even need a beach chair (but it’s nice to have). Just nature. Because nature is God in tangible form. I can happily let go of everything else.

That’s what I’m remembering and trying to bottle up to take home. Five simple truths. What are your simple truths?


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