My dad turned to the waitress who was tired and slightly harried: “Thank you so much for serving us today. You have been kind and very thoughtful. Do you know what the Bible says about you? Did you know that the Bible says that those who serve have a special blessing? I pray that the Lord blesses you with an extra special blessing today.”
I watched as her face turned from amusement to gratefulness, and her eyes well up with tears.
Surely, she had served some pretty demanding people who left less than generous tips. Carrying tray after tray and serving people who didn’t give her a second thought all day, just so she could scrape together a living to feed her husband and kids.
And here this man sat there telling her that the Bible talks about her? That God wants to bless her?
I never tired of watching my dad intentionally turn to the one others would overlook and speak into their lives in a personal way. He truly lived “missionally” every single moment of every day.
There are four ways we can make our summer vacations a family mission trip
1. Make a Battle Plan
Sit down and plan out ways you can make your summer vacation into a missional vacation. If you don’t plan for it, it will not happen. Have your children write out a testimony and rehearse it with each other. Make up a codeword to remind each other to stay missional while you’re relaxing on the beach. Develop a unique symbol you can use on t-shirts to wear them as a family as a way to spark conversation with those in line at Disneyland.
2. Let Your Light Shine
Anyone who goes to typical vacation spots in peak tourist season will have to wait in line someplace (probably every place), and there is nothing that can cause us to be impatient and rude like waiting in long lines. Be patient. The waiters, servers, and ride operators work long hours and serve many inconsiderate people. Purpose in your heart to make their day. While waiting in line, pray and ask the Lord to give you a kind word that will speak personally to their heart. You never know how this will impact their life – perhaps for eternity.
3. Build Your Faith
Don’t let your family devotions slip while on vacation. Be intentional about maintaining your devotion time even on vacation, and during your devotions pray for those who serve you. You can pray daily, and by name, for those who serve you at the hotel. Pray for each person you will encounter that day that the Lord will bless them through you. Then, pray for a “divine appointment”. A divine appointment is an opportunity to share the gospel with someone.
4. Put Feet to Your Faith
Find unique ways to share your testimony with someone. Revelation says that there is power in our testimony. So while in the first point you had your children practice their testimony; actively and intentionally look for ways to share it with someone. Don’t be shy! Don’t make it stiff or canned, allow the Lord to reveal to you opportunities to share your faith with the lost.
Make this year’s vacation more than a vacation. Make it a missional vacation!