Summer is a great time to take advantage of down time and do some things you don’t usually get a chance to do. Free time can also sometimes lead to being lazy, watching too much television or being frustrated that we didn’t get things done because we were too busy doing something else. Here are some ways to take advantage of your free time this summer and impact someone else’s life.
Invite a friend or neighbor to a church event or outreach ministry. Over the summer many outreach ministries and churches have different activities that are geared towards inviting your friends or neighbors. Vacation Bible school or sports camps with faith-based messages are a great opportunity to reach out and invite the people in your life that you’ve been praying for her to come to Christ. Pray and ask God who He wants you to invite. Try and fill up your car.
Serve together! Find a ministry or a group either locally or internationally and serve together as a group of friends, family or even as your small group. It could be at a one-time event or an ongoing opportunity. Pray as a group and ask God to show you where to serve. Giving back is a great opportunity to realize that our faith is not about ourselves but instead showing the love of Christ to others. After you serve together take time to discuss what the time meant to each person. By listening to one another and hearing what each person took from the experience you can encourage each other throughout the summer.
“Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8 All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. 9 I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.[a] They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:7-10
Have a lemonade stand with purpose. Pick out a cause or ministry that is close to your heart. Instead of keeping the funds from a lemonade stand for yourself give it to the ministry or nonprofit of your choice. Let people know what you are raising the money for. You might even be able to do a virtual lemonade stand online. You can share a video or photos about what the ministry or cause you are raising money for is about with your friends and family that are not local. If you have a gift or special talent, you might consider even donating those resources to a ministry or cause that is close to your heart. For example, if you have the gift of crocheting consider crocheting blankets for babies in the NICU. It might be mentoring students in need for classes they need help in over the summer. It could even be opening your home for students or other groups of people that need a place to gather for Bible study or other activities.
Help someone have an amazing summer. There are many children and students who can’t afford to go to church camp or even vacation bible school. Ask your church or ministry if you can sponsor someone to attend. They might even have a list of supplies that they need like snacks or art supplies that you can support instead. If you have a school-aged child encourage them to invite their friends from school or the neighborhood to your churches summer programs. If you are able to volunteer, consider serving at camp or your churches summer program. Pray and ask God to show you if there is someone or some way that you can support summer outreach.
Have a movie night. Whether it’s going to a movie that’s in the movie theater or watching a movie at home. Invite your friends small group or neighborhood friends over for a movie night. It doesn’t have to be a Christian-based movie, it could be a movie with a faith-based or positive message. Many of the movies out have discussion questions that are available online. Serve dessert afterwards and talk about the movie. Ask the group what impacted them from the movie or if there was something that stuck out to them. If the opportunity arises, have someone in the group or even be willing to share your story of how you came to Christ. Some movies even have resources online where the actors or people the movie is based off of share their personal story of how they came to Christ consider sharing those as well.