Every year families look forward to summer months, for a chance to rest and play and break free from the school year schedule. And every year those summer months seem to fly by faster than the year before. How can we make time slow down?

Here at Faithgirlz we encourage you to make the most of these precious remaining summer days, by spending focused time together as a family and inviting God to be a part of your relaxation, just as He is a part of your work.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

The last thing we all need as summer winds down is another to-do list. So instead, here is our suggested summer DO NOT list. We hope it sets you free.

DO NOT worry about the upcoming school year. Instead, pray. God will cover your child with His grace just as He has done every year past.

DO NOT succumb to the pressure to enroll your child in one more camp, one more class, or one more tournament before school resumes. Instead, spend that time together, building memories.

DO NOT let the ice cream truck pass by without buying something.

DO NOT measure the success of your summer by the number of vacations you took or the quantity of play dates you managed. Instead, evaluate it according to the number of smiles and popsicles and pajama days your children enjoyed. Productivity does not always equal positivity.

DO NOT look at your phone screen more than you look at your children. Time is fleeting. Listen, pay attention, and give lots of hugs.

DO NOT count regrets over what you didn’t do or see or experience yet this summer. Rather, count your blessings and remember, “This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).

DO NOT stop dreaming, laughing, or believing.

DO NOT forget to thank God for another beautiful summer, another collection of hectic or lazy sunny days, and a beautiful family to share them with. You are blessed. Praise the Lord!