I don’t know if these are still considered to be the “dog days” of summer. I understand that the Farmer’s Almanac places the “dog days” of summer primarily in July, but if the “dog days” of summer is that part of summer when the heat and humidity are high and our tolerance of that heat and humidity is low, then it seems to me that right now qualifies as the “dog days” of summer. These are the days when, not just dogs, but human beings slow down a bit, maybe take a vacation, or at least find a way to take some time away from relentlessness. There was a time in my life when I fought against giving into the “dog days.” I guess I had enough of what some used to call the “Protestant work ethic” drilled into me that it seemed to me that there was something morally questionable about slowing down, but that is not how I see things anymore. Indeed, now, I think that there is something morally questionable about relentlessness. Now, I think that slowing down has a moral purpose, helping us to re-center on what really matters in life—the people whom we love, the beauty that surrounds us….  And I think that slowing down reminds us that God is God, and that we are not—a reminder that is essential to sanity in the intersection of faith and life. Happy dog days! May you find a time to sit on a porch, dip your feet into some cool water, and do absolutely nothing that is important. You need this in your life more than you may realize…..

–Pastor Don Steele

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