19 Ways to Have a Better Summer
Summer is finally here!
We, at indoubt, want to give you 19 ways (challenges) to have a better season. As you may or may not know, indoubt is all about engaging the relevant issues of life and faith that we face every day, cultivating conversation. Some of the things listed below have to do with faith, some with culture, and some that we just think would be a good idea.
Some of the team here at indoubt are going to try and achieve all 19 at least once this summer. Are you in? We’ll be documenting some of our’s, and you should too. When you’re doing one of the challenges that allows you to take a photo or video, why not let everyone see? Just hashtag your photo/video with #indoubtSummerFun
Now, go ahead and pick your first challenge:
1) Don’t take your phone in the bathroom.
We have no idea the time we waste doing this. Unless you’re in a public washroom, just keep that little machine out of there.
2) When you have a question, ask someone face-to-face before googling it.
We are wired to type questions in our phones before asking someone. If you have a question about life, faith, or anything, just ask a friend first. See what happens.
3) Pick a day and don’t text, but call people.
This is hard, isn’t it? But imagine, things would be figured out way faster. And we all know it can be hard to determine someone’s “attitude” behind a text. Hearing them speak makes it a lot easier.
4) Read a whole article, not just part of it.
Am I the only one who skims an article, or even just looks at the title and moves on? Pick an article and push through. Commit to it. We got this.
5) Don’t post on or check social media for one full day.
For some, this is easy; for others, incredibly difficult. If your job depends on social media, then do this exercise on a Saturday or your day off. I think we’d all be surprised with how much more we think and do during that day.
6) Read through a whole book of the Bible in one sitting.
No, you can’t pick Titus, 1, 2, or 3 John, or Jude (or Jonah, or any other book that’s less than 2 chapters!). We often don’t read books of the Bible in one sitting, yet we say we struggle with understanding Scripture. Many books were meant to be read all at once – like Paul’s letters in the New Testament. Try it out.
7) Go on a hike with a family member.
See if a parent, grandparent, sibling, uncle, or second cousin twice removed wants to go on a hike! Whether you have a good relationship with your biological family or not, they’ll feel honoured that you asked them. Plus, you get to have a good conversation AND exercise.
8) Fast from FOOD, not something else, for a whole day.
There’s nothing wrong with fasting from social media, coffee, sugar, etc., but you don’t hear a lot of people fasting fully from all food for a whole day. Try it.
9) Go out with your pastor or church leader.
Think of a topic of faith or culture you’re interested in and meet with your pastor or any church leader to chat about it. Again, we often run to the internet or a friend to discuss important issues of life and faith. The thing is, our pastor is put in their place for a reason – to help us and shepherd us in spiritual things.
10) Grab some friends and listen to a whole album while reading the lyrics.
I did this with one of Vampire Weekend’s albums. It’s a really good experience. Make sure you have good speakers, comfy chairs, snacks, and printed off sheets for everyone. When you think about, this only takes about an hour!
11) Ask your church if there’s anything you can do at an event this summer to help out at.
Summer is always the season where churches have special events. Our church does a waterfight, chili contest, and an apple pie Sunday. Each of these events need quite a few people to volunteer. So, volunteer!
12) Choose a day and don’t use your vehicle.
Either walk, bike, or take public transit. You’ll meet more people, breathe better air, and see more of the world close up. This will also give you better opportunities to share the gospel with someone that needs it.
13) Pray for one hour straight.
Yeah, this is difficult. But why? If prayer is the means for God to work supernaturally in our life and others, then why is it so hard? We’ve trained our minds and bodies to constantly be stimulated. Prayer takes effort, stillness, and the mind to think. If you have any stamina at all, any ability to remain still, and a brain, then you can do this. See the difference it makes.
14) Praise a friend or family member for their character or work in front of others.
A co-worker recently did this to me, and the affirmation is really encouraging. This is really easy to do as well. So, the next time you’re talking with a group of friends, co-workers, or are at a table with your family, pick a person, and tell others what you appreciate about them.
15) Pick an amount of money and choose a charity to donate to.
Maybe you don’t have much, $10 will do. Whatever the amount, find a charity or non-profit that interests you and give to them. Not only is generosity rewarding, but you’re significantly helping that organization fulfill its mission and vision.
16) Ask a friend/family member how you could help them in any way.
When was the last time someone called you and asked, “Hey! Is there anything you need help with?” Probably not for a long time. We’ve become a very autonomous culture that’s only concerned with things that concern us. Surprise someone with a helping hand.
17) Rearrange your room.
There’s something weirdly comforting about this. Plus, you end up getting rid of stuff you don’t need, cleaning up garbage, vacuuming under the bed which NEVER gets done, and you feel like you’re in a new place. If you’re married or have a roommate, make sure you talk with them before doing this.
18) Come up with 3 questions to ask your pastor after one of their sermons.
It fluctuates from pastor to pastor, but most pastors spend somewhere between 10-20 hours on the sermon each week. That’s a lot of work they’ve put into the Scripture and theme. Pastors, unfortunately, are now used to receiving little to no feedback. Sure, they get a “Well done pastor,” but nothing of substance. Why not surprise your pastor with just three tough questions? They will be more than excited to answer you.
19) Pick a personal home project or task, and ask someone to help you with it.
Not everyone struggles with this, but I know I can: asking people for help. When it comes to home projects or tasks, it can be so easy to default to “I’ll do this my way, alone.” The fact is, people want to help. There’s something inside us that yearns for the ability to help others (yet we don’t know it a lot of the time). By asking someone for help, you’re not only receiving needed help, but you’re helping them fulfill a need they may not even have known.