Summer is my favorite. I love the long, warm days. I love having my kids home from school. I love campfires and how my hair smells faintly of smoke even after I wash it. I love s’mores and food cooked on the barbecue. 

This summer we are taking a trip to my sister’s home in British Columbia. It has been 7 1/2 years since we’ve been up there! It was winter the last time we made the trek and Logan was only 6 months old. We drove over a mountain range that was so snowy and foggy that I think my knuckles were as white as the snow. We had an amazing time sledding, tubing, drinking hot cocoa, and celebrating Christmas together. However, I am looking forward to experiencing a week of hiking, kayaking, swimming, and relaxing with my sister and her family. Like I said, summer is my favorite!

The rhythm of my life is very different in the summer. With all of the wonderful things that come with summer, I have noticed that the people I see and the connections I make are not the same. People are gone on vacations, kids are gone at camps, and days are spent up at the lake. The people we saw night after night during a sport season we don’t see as much now that the season is over. The people that came to our home on Sunday evenings for Life Group during the school year don’t come over every Sunday now that groups are taking a break for the summer. I miss those people! 

On Sunday we are going to host one of the Big Idea BBQ’s at our home. I’m really looking forward to it! It will be such a good opportunity to build community and get to know people better. Stepping out and having new families over is a good stretch for me. If you haven’t already, I’d encourage you to sign up for one of the barbecues (clipboards for signups will be out on Sunday morning). I’d also encourage you to reach out to a woman you haven’t seen over the last few weeks. Go for coffee. Write her a note. Have her and her family over for a campfire and s’mores. 

Summer flies by way too fast. Before we know it, school will be starting and fall will be here. Enjoy all the wonderful things summer has to offer, but don’t forget to be intentional about staying in community with one another, praying for one another and encouraging one another.

"Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing." (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

Stacey Butenschoen
For Women's Ministry