For years my idea of leisure was skewed. Perhaps I confused it with idleness. The image of a vacation on a tropical beach sipping a cold drink and enjoying the view had lodged itself in my brain as a vacation ideal.

Having recently returned from one of the best vacations of my life, I’ve been pondering the ideas of work and leisure. While family vacations definitely fall under the category of leisure, we were NOT idle.

My husband and I spent a few quiet days alone together, listening to music and podcasts and conversing with each other. We prayed together, walked together and watched younger people playing in the water. We breathed in the clean mountain air and relished our escape from the Phoenix desert heat.

Then we met up with our daughter,  son-in-law, and their seven children. A couple of family friends joined in, making a grand total of 13 people in the vacation house. There were a few quiet moments for reading and reflection, but I was far more physically active than I am in my daily work. The unaccustomed noise and activity and long waits for my turn in the bathroom didn’t bother me. I rested.

I rested from the responsibilities of my job and from the routine of daily life. We went grocery shopping for thirteen people instead of three. I swept the floor and washed dishes and made a simple meal to share. I hiked longer than I thought possible and my sleep was so sweet.

I guess you could say it was work, but it wasn’t drudgery at all. It was a welcome opportunity to love (in tangible ways) my family who lives too far away. Such joy was ours for those few days!

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