As we celebrate the founding of our country, it brings to mind our liberties and the sweet knowledge that we can speak freely about our faith. This is a blessing that many others around the world do not have and one of the freedoms for which much blood was shed.
In shore towns, we consider July Fourth the peak of the summer season, as well as our country’s birthday. Guests, second homeowners, and visitors have arrived and because the holiday was on Monday, I am sure there were many weekend-long family celebrations taking place.
I have noticed that when family or friends come to visit me, the one thing that is usually dropped from their agenda is the time for celebrations of God. A few of my visitors who are regular church attendees don’t necessarily include church in their vacation schedule.
Personally, I really enjoy visiting other houses of worship where I might appreciate a new style of music or preaching. In fact, my husband usually brings back a bulletin to share with our pastor, and then he tells him a bit about the church we have visited while on vacation.
This came to my mind as I was planning for our summer visitors who are due shortly. So, with that in mind, I want to encourage not only my visitors, but yours, as well, with some entertaining ways to keep our faith in our focus, even while on vacation, and they are all absolutely free!
As the third season of "The Chosen" wraps up filming in Texas, you can get ready to watch it by viewing the first two seasons on The Chosen app. Look for the app that has a woman’s face on the front and states “TV show - 2 seasons.” This production is based on the life of Jesus of Nazareth and brings flesh and bone to the stories we read about Jesus in the Bible.
The series is gripping. Jesus is seen in such a human/God man way that I believe my whole sense of how strong and compassionate Jesus is has strengthened my walk of faith and opened my eyes in a new way, as I read His Words in the Bible.
I highly recommend "The Chosen," and I do hope you will give it a try.
Another way to keep everyone entertained and in the Word this summer is a great work of animation called the Bible Project. The Bible Project can be viewed either on YouTube or online. This extraordinary collection of Biblical instruction was conceived in 2014 by two very brilliant young men who want to make clear the God of the Holy Bible and they share this knowledge for free.
What started as two animated videos on YouTube gained followers, which set the trajectory for the expansion of their work and expand they did.
There is now an entire staff who continue to create and add to an extensive collection of entertaining and insightful videos, along with summaries of almost every book in the Bible.
At the Bible Project website, you can view numerous podcasts and videos on Bible-related teachings, such as fellowship, the Torah, and even how to read the Bible, as well as teaching videos. One viewing of a video summary of the Book of John was enough to get me hooked.
When we start a new Bible study at Sunday school, we view the synopsis of that book from the Bible Project’s collection. The videos show us clearly the outline of the book, directing our attention to points the writer was making, as well as the intended audience.
These videos are fast-paced and thorough. I find it helps me to view them more than once because the information packed into these short videos is fairly dense.
If your family is interested in the Bible or maybe just has specific questions on Biblical subjects, I think you will find that the teaching at the Bible Project is well thought out, clearly presented, and actually quite fun to watch.
While I am recommending enjoyable, free Christian-oriented things to do with your guests this summer, let us not forget the seasonal churches in our area. In Ocean City, we are blessed to have the Ocean City Tabernacle, which has been around as long as Ocean City.
The Tabernacle has Sunday morning teachings during the summer and if you take time to check out their website, you will find a little something for everyone. There are children’s programs, Bible studies, Vacation Bible School, and evening concerts (free).
The Tabernacle is a great venue to enjoy teaching by visiting speakers and there is not a bad seat in the auditorium.
If you enjoy camp meetings, the South Seaville Camp Meeting grounds even have a place for you and your visitors to stay. They are located in a quaint and beautifully wooded setting. They also welcome visitors to their regular camp meetings and services during the week. You can view their website for further information.
I pray that you, your family, and guests will take advantage of the online teachings, along with our summer churches, vacation bible schools, and camp meetings to encourage and strengthen your faith this summer.
ED. NOTE: Amy Patsch writes from Ocean City. Email her at writerGoodGod@gmail.com.