There are no Friday Night Notes tonight because I wasn't out preaching the Gospel in the marketplace. Where was I? I was on my way back from a great week in Canada's wilderness with my family. We camped out in a tent, we went on nature walks, I barbacued, the kids went swimming, and I did my best to relax, and enjoy God's wondrous Creation; and truly, His Creation is wondrous!
Before going to bed, every night this week I read a bit of James A. Stewart's "I Must Tell", a short book which chronicles the work of a young street preacher who laboured in the British Isles roughly 100 years ago. In it, Stewart recounts how his health was seriously compromised due to too much Gospel work. He wrote:
"This failure in my health was due to my own foolishness. I had thought that I had to be preaching day and night and that it was a waste of time to take rest and recreation. I was young and I never felt really tired. Sometimes I would preach forty times in as many open-air meetings in a single week. When I was given leave of absence from the Mission to go home and rest between our busy schedules, instead of resting and relaxing, I seemed to preach all the more. When I would return to Mr. Wheeler from these so-called "rest periods," I had not taken one single day off to give my mind and my body a chance to relax.
Every young preacher must learn the lesson that the body demands seasons of relaxation in the Lord's work."
While I will not pretend I am anywhere close to the level of a James A. Stewart in evangelistic work, I have learned all about the necessity of taking a break. I probably should take more of breaks than I am currently taking (the strain can sometimes be truly difficult to endure), but I feel a large measure of responsibility to my fellow man, my church family and of course, to my God.
This "break" wasn't only a time where I put my spiritual activities on hold, it was a time for me to spend quality time with my family. It was good to play, explore and teach my children one-on-one at a beautiful Provincial Park which I have literally fallen in love with. The park isn't very busy, so this family vacation really is a family time. After a week with my wife and my children at camp, I must again say: Praise God for my family!
I'll try to post a few pictures and videos from our trip sometime this weekend... now I'm off to my own comfortable bed... it'll be nice...
Good night, dear readers,
ps: here is a short video clip of my wife and children on one of our nature hikes.