We’ve all had a case of hangry during vacations. Routines get disrupted, no one can agree on where or what to eat, and a case of hangry breaks out. We learn to carry snacks and plan ahead more, because nothing ruins a good time more than a car full of hangry people.
But have you ever considered what happens when you skip your spiritual routines while on vacation? At home, I love spending a quiet hour studying my Bible, reflecting, praying, and journaling. I have a home office with a comfy rocker and a side table, and I retreat there each morning before anyone else wakes up.
At this stage of life, I know myself well enough to know that when I miss this time alone with God, I’m not a pretty person. I get flustered, distracted, snappy, and grumpy. And because I don’t like myself when I act that way, I get even more flustered, distracted, snappy, and grumpy. I liken it to a case of heavenly hangry.
Part of my need for solitude with God arises from my introverted personality. I need to recharge before spending time with others. Time with my best friend provides the charge that I need to face whatever might arise. Combine my introvert tendencies with the reality of most family vacations, and I realize a disaster lurks if I don’t maintain my routine. Vacation, after all, usually means large doses of family in cramped quarters for long periods of time.
Don’t get me wrong. I love my family and I love spending time with them, but I also need time alone to recharge! I’ve found five simple tips to helping me maintain my spiritual routine during my vacation.
Tips for Avoiding a Case of Heavenly Hangry
1. Plan ahead. I know it sounds simple, but two years ago when we took our first vacation to Alaska, I resolved to keep up my daily time with God. By envisioning myself spending sweet time alone with God, I found it easier to actually stick to my routine.
2. Keep it simple. Vacationing people have to minimize on stuff during vacation. That meant that I left my bulky Bible and giant collection of highlighters and colored pencils at home. I used the YouVersion Bible app and the verse of the day as the basis for my devotions.
3. Redefine ‘quiet.’ I get up earlier than everyone else and find a quiet place for my devotions. I have to redefine ‘quiet,’ though. Starbucks is quiet if no one knows me. A hotel lobby or even my car will suffice.
4. Develop a routine. I purchased a simple journal and came up with the ‘vacation devotion’ format. I write in the place and date at the top of the page, and then list 5-10 things for which I am grateful. Next, I copy down the verse of the day, and spend time contemplating and writing about how it applies to my life that day. I finish by praying (for me, that looks like writing) for specific events, people, and situations.
5. Keep a sense of wonder and worship. Because we tend to vacation in wild and beautiful places, I maintain a sense of awe and wonder throughout the day. Glaciers, grizzlies, minute wildflowers, thundering waterfalls, and towering mountains remind me of my Creator throughout the day as I drive and hike.Five tips for avoiding a case of heavenly hangry on your next #vacation. Click To Tweet
Here are some of the wonders I’ve seen this week (in addition to the bears in the graphics)!
What routines and habits have you found helpful when you vacation?
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