A Working Vacation

Commander Bill Gunter —  July 20, 2010

This past week, I took three days off from work for vacation and headed to the CM Expo in Kentucky (that’s where the VW van was located, not my transportation). In two weeks, I will be taking another week of vacation from my FT job to participate in a children’s summer camp.

All the while, I am watching families that I minister to take vacations to the beach, to the mountains, etc. to relax.  My vacations, however, are focused more on my “part-time job” (children/youth pastor) and my volunteer role serving with regional Awana missionaries rather than for “fun in the sun.”  Oftentimes, the vacation time I do take in scheduled around Sundays so I can be at the Sunday services to serve the children and families in my church.  I really can’t remember the last Sunday I wasn’t at my home church.

Even though my vacations are what most people would call “working vacations” (as a Children’s Pastor or Awana volunteer), they are generally relaxing for me as they give me a chance to get away from the stress and daily routine of my full time job.  While some vocational children’s pastors may not be able to relate, the Expo and camp are actually really relaxing for me in the same way that things like the Yosemite Summit that Karl Bastian (Kidology) offers to FT children’s pastors.

Through all of this, though, it is important to me that I keep in mind that I still need to take time off strictly for the purpose of allowing my wife and I to spend time away together (we did enjoy CMX together last week) and days just to relax and do things that are not ministry related.

In case you were wondering – Yes, I could use a “Sunday off,” and I do plan to take one soon before the Awana year starts. So I want to encourage you, as I am often encouraged, to be sure to take time off for yourself to relax, to re-energize and to spend time with your family.  When is the next time you plan to take some time off totally away from ministry related activities?

Commander Bill Gunter

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Bill is the Associate Pastor of Children & Youth at Hanover Fellowship in Hanover, Pennsylvania where his responsibilities include caring for children and youth from birth through high school. Along with his responsibilities in the local church, Bill is very involved in the Awana ministry, serving on the ministry teams of local Awana missionaries, providing trainings, leading workshops and helping run regional events.