I had some time off for Spring Break recently and spent a good deal of the time doing what I call recreational reading. I read at work several hours each day but it is rarely what I would call recreational reading. I am preparing to teach a class or make a presentation or write an article or a preparing a speech or message. On vacation, I read purely fun stuff. Richard Russo, Lee Child, Robert Crais, Carl Hiason, Steve Martin - writers that take me off my normal path into a world of craziness, mystery, and the like.
So what is recreational reading? For me, it is the joy of the story. The story can be fun, silly, sad, scary, even wild and crazy - I love a good story. It gives my brain a break from the seriousness of normal life - of work, of projects, of research. Heaven knows my brain needs a break. It has a way of recharging my battery and refreshing my spirit.
My taste in fun reading is probably not like yours - no matter - it relaxes and re-creates me.
That word recreation is literally to be re-created - to get new energy, new zip in your mental attitude. After all those funny, crazy, fast paced stories of weird people, I returned from my brief break with a light feeling. Relaxed, refreshed, and ready to tackle the real stuff of life.
On my first day back at work, I am preparing a memorial service - the service is this evening. This is real life - the reality of death and loss which intrudes into our daily lives. The recreation time helps recharge us for times like these.
Even Jesus needed to withdraw from the crowds - how much more do we need to do that as well.
Off to work we go - feeling energized for the tasks before us.
Just thinking, Steve