The Bulging Muscles of Summer

lemonadeOh the bulging muscles summer must have to carry the weight of our hopes, dreams, and wild expectations!

“Are you ready for summer?” everybody asks excitedly.

Yes, of COURSE I’m ready!  Are you kidding me?

Visions of tall glasses of lemonade dance in my head. Lemonade sipped on the front porch in that comfy rocking chair.  It’s a beautiful sunny day.  With butterflies.  And a gentle breeze.  And tiny tots frolicking in the new-mown grass.

Except that…

The grass actually needs to be mowed.  Man, I think the mower needs gas and the gas can is empty.   And instead of butterflies there are flies.  Buzzy flies.  On the rim of my lemonade glass.  Which is probably too much sugar anyway.  And the tiny tots are fighting over a toy.

“Pop.”  (That’s the sound of your bubble bursting.)

Summer is actually a super great season.  It usually gives us long warm days, a vacation of some sort, opportunity to be outside, time with the kids.  It just can’t hold the weight of heaven.

We jam so many expectations into this one little season that it just can’t hold them up.

This summer, we’re going to be organized and clean all our closets and junk drawers.  We’re going to be relaxed and just do nothing.  We’re going to be fun and go on vacations.  We’re going to be intellectual and read that stack of books.  We’re going to be social and fit in all those lunch dates we missed all year.  We’re going to be healthy and start working out.

Meanwhile summer’s muscles are drooping.

If we’re over ten years old, we know that summer is great but never as perfect as we hope. There are still messy rooms, bickering children, rainy vacations, relational conflicts, lost keys, sicknesses, and stale pretzels. (Where did stale pretzels come from?  I don’t know.)

Here is what I’m reminding myself of today:

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it (Psalm 118:24).

This is his day.   And it’s gonna be good.   The flies, the meeting at work, the argument, the sticky spilled lemonade… He’s right in the middle of it with us, and he’s got important things for us to do—things like rejoicing in him because he made this day.

We don’t need to stress out when the fantasy of summertime falls flat because a perfect summer will never satisfy anyway.  It will pass by like all the others.

So forgetful soul of mine, embrace the day and whatever comes with it.  Hope in the Lord and not in a season.  Be glad and rejoice that your God is infinitely more refreshing than the iciest glass of lemonade.

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