Who doesn’t love family vacations? When it’s over, I always return with plenty of laundry to wash, souvenirs to display, memories to cherish, and lessons to remember.
Here are some lessons of the heart that I brought home from our recent vacation.
Finances have kept us from going away as a family for more than a day. So, the opportunity to go for a week gave us a sense of thankfulness. It was something we had to keep reminding our kids because days spent out of our normal routine sometimes led them to believe they can have anything they want.
But, it wasn’t just a lesson for the kids. A thankful attitude helped to ward off an entitlement mentality that can quickly zap the fun out of a family trip.
Family vacations can be such a blur with so much activity. Even if our pace is fast, I can slow my mind to savor each moment with my family. When we went to the beach for the day, I spent most of that time with my 3-year-old, building sand castles, while my husband took the older kids to play in the water. Being with my little one reminded me to slow down and take the time to play with him. Going at a slower pace allowed me to discover new and fun things through his eyes.
We all woke up early to depart for our trip as planned. Bags were packed and ready to go, and not a single thing was forgotten. Everything was going smoothly on Day 1, but not for long.
Someone was going to have a temper tantrum. Someone was going to pee in their pants. Someone was going to complain about the food. Someone was going to wake me up at 3 in the morning.
In other words, BE FLEXIBLE.
Family vacations are not always going to be fun and games. Eventually we were going to rub each other the wrong way. After rebuking my kids for some bad attitudes, I soon began to see the same selfishness in my own heart. During the times that I forgot to be flexible, I had to learn another valuable lesson when I had to ask my family for forgiveness: BE HUMBLE.
Be a Mother
A family getaway doesn’t equate getting away from my responsibilities as a mother. Just because I am not physically in my house doesn’t mean I don’t have to take care of my home. My environment doesn’t change who I am, who God called me to be. So, whether it was giving my kid a bath or burying his little feet in the sand, my role remained unchanged. I am Mommy.
So when you pack for your next trip, don’t forget the toothbrush, include some extra underwear, but most of all, don’t leave behind the right atittudes of making the most of the time with your loved ones.
What have you done to get your heart and mind ready for family vacations?
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