Recreate. Not re-create, but rec-reate. I’ve never used the word before this summer, but its one of my favorites now.
One night last winter, my husband and I were pondering how time slips so quickly away. Our children have raced from stage to stage and our exhaustion has often clouded how quickly they’re moving. “You know what’s really important?” my husband asked. “This right here.” Motioning toward our kids’ bedrooms while they slept, his voice got quiet. “Clayton is halfway out of our house.”
So this summer we cashed in our credit card miles for bicycles, and we’re hoping that time no longer steals our awareness of childhoods slipping away from us.
Joining our son and daughter in this ever so common form of activity has redefined summer for us. Recreate. Mirriam-Webster defines this verb form of recreation as “to give new life or freshness to”. New life. Freshness. Why did it take us so long?
Among the benefits of exercise and being together are lessons to be learned. Living with an others-centered orientation… choosing self-control… getting back up when you are beaten down… admitting when you have caused your own crashes… recognizing that not all physical activity has to be a fierce competition. Our children are learning deeper truths from bike riding.
And their mom and dad are learning to recreate.
And all four of us our learning a new way to worship.
Eric Liddell, a prospective missionary to China and a 1924 Olympic gold medalist in the 400 meter race, understood it even though others misunderstood him. Embracing himself as a complex being, the movie Chariots of Fire portrays him as saying, “I believe God made me for a purpose, but He also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.” Liddell’s sanctuary extended beyond the borders of churches and prayer closets. He knew His Maker delighted in Him. And by using his gifts – even his physical talents – he worshipped.
The concept is so different it’s hard to wrap my mind around it sometimes. In exercising, I rest. In resting, I worship. In worshipping, I sense God’s pleasure.
Recreate. I am loving this lesson.