Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Christmas Break!

Yes! Christmas break is coming. Lots of free time. Well, at least more than usual. What will you do with yours?

Today I spent time talking with the sixteen- to twenty-something-year-olds at the ministry where we work about their Christmas breaks. (Some are facing theirs with anticipation, some with trepidation.) Later I joined them all for dinner. After hanging out some, I started to head home to work on this post, and stopped. Hey, if anyone knows the answer to the question I want to write about, these guys do.

So I went back inside and asked for their ideas for creative ways to spend the next few weeks really enaged in life (instead of being online for most of that time).

One, by the way, mentioned how ironic it was that I was using the Internet to bring the topic up. Maybe not the most popular place to talk about doing something different than being online. But it's not that being online is a bad thing. It’s about making choices. Here’s a quote from Eyes Online, Eyes On Life:

The Internet—it can offer a really great experience, or for some, it can easily become an obsession. Without realizing it, we’re sucked into activities that rob us of the amazing identity, resources, and relationships God has in mind for us.
Eyes Online, Eyes On Life p. 17
Who wants to be robbed at Christmas?

So back to the creative ways to spend the break. Here are the ideas they shared:

Ask someone to coffee
Go visit a church you've never been to
Spend time with family talking, bonding, doing things together like working on a puzzle
Take a dance class
Take a walk or drive to see Christmas lights
Go to a church performance
Get into the Bible
Read a book—"like actual words on paper"
Make dinner for friends or family
Walk on the beach (or take a walk in a beautiful place)
Eat meals with family
Play board games with family
Do crafts—like beading
Jam with friends
Go to movies with friends
Bake with family or friends
Volunteer at a homeless shelter or an animal shelter (or any volunteer work)
Go to a bookstore and discover a new topic of interest
Crochet while watching a favorite chick flick
Go for a leisurely bike ride

One who offered a couple of the ideas above temporarily forgot this was specifically about alternative activities to being online all the time. She said the list goes for anything. Do these things “instead of making choices where you're messing up.”

Or, I’ll add, for those who wouldn’t think of “messing up,” do some of these to assure a really amazing break. Get together with friends or talk with your family and come up with some of your own ideas. Then take those beyond scribbles on paper. Plan them into your day--either for yourself or with friends and family. Get a few on the calendar and don't let anything stop you from making sure they happen--especially the Internet :) .

Enjoy your break!

author of the Live Free series, Standard Publishing

true stories, true hope

for teens, young adults,
and those who care about them.


Kathleen Popa said...

Actual words on paper. Love that.

Jan Kern said...

Me too. I love the directness and honestly of it.

Plus actual words on paper is what writers are all about, right? :)

Thanks for your comment, Kathleen.