Vacations are wonderful interruptions to the regular rhythms of life.
But they also can be unhealthy interruptions to a consistent quiet time routine.
Since faith is integrated into all of life and kingdom-living is 24/7, we don't want to take a break from spending time with Jesus when we go on holidays.
But routine is hard to maintain while travelling. I get it. We must give ourselves some grace while still pursuing God.
The reality is, it all comes down to choice. We can choose to make spending time with God a priority, even while on holidays. Here are some tips to help you keep a quiet time routine while on vacation:
1. Simplify your quiet time routine
If you are the gal with several Bible translations, multiple journals, and an array of pens and highlighters, my suggestion is to simplify your materials and thus your quiet time routine. Choose one Bible, one journal and a small handful of writing instruments to take with you on your vacation. Don't overcomplicate it, and you'll be more likely to do it. Stick to your Bible reading plan, but you may want to spreading out one day of reading over two days.
2. Use technology
Depending on what type of vacation you are planning, there may not be room to pack all your favourite Bible study materials. In this case, use your phone for Bible reading. Chances are, you will (almost) always have your phone with you, so you can open your Bible app while sitting on the beach, or watching your kids play at the park, or waiting in an airport.
3. Carry your Bible
If you've brought your Bible along, throw it in your beach bag or your backpack. Take it with you out on the balcony of your hotel with your coffee. If it's always within reach, you are more likely to open it.
4. Take advantage of pockets of time
Perhaps you always read your Bible in the morning, but while on vacation you want to sleep in. Simply move your quiet time to a more appropriate time of the day. Open your Bible when it works within the natural rhythms of your holiday. Take advantage of those moments where you are lounging beside the pool, waiting in the airport, or on a long flight.
5. Stay connected to your church
If you miss a Sunday, carve out some time to watch the service online with your family. Participating in worship with your local body keeps you connected even when you are miles away.
The bottom line is this: Don't take a vacation from your quiet time. God wants to be a part of your work AND your play, your productivity AND your rest. He wants all of you. And He delights in you choosing to commune with Him at home AND away.
Here's how I maintained my time in the Word while on a recent trip to the Dominican Republic:
I read my Bible on the balcony in the mornings
I hand wrote Scripture on the airplane and on the hotel balcony in late afternoons
I read a theology book while waiting in the airport and sitting on the beach
I listened to a theology podcast while lying in the sun
I watched our Sunday service while in the bathroom getting ready for the day
And funny story: My carry-on luggage was pulled aside and searched while going through security because of the 'book' in my bag. The man grinned when he picked it up and said, "Big book!" Then he opened it and his smile grew and he said, "I'm a Christian too!" Your Bible can be a conversation starter.
What other tips do you have for keeping a quiet time routine while on vacation? Comment below!