Vacation - Is it a nicety or a necessity?

As summer quickly approaches, the kids are antsy to get out of school; we look forward to more time outside, time at the beach, more time with the kids and vacation time.  

As the years have gone by, I have noticed family vacations look different today than they did eons ago when I was but a wee young lad.  When I was a kid, summer vacation meant free time for 10 weeks, running around, late night flashlight tag, catching lightning bugs and at least a week on the road with my family exploring the wide open spaces of the US.

Dad disconnected from work, Mom was a teacher so she was naturally detached from work. As a family we enjoyed the travel in the family station wagon (1971 Olds Vista Cruiser Station Wagon with a big block 455) and made memories.  

Were your memories like this or more like vacation with Chevy Chase? 

Did my mom and dad get rested while we were away? I have no idea, but I know I enjoyed the time we spent together. We grew together as a family – eating in wayside rest areas and on the back bumper of the station wagon. I can even remember a McDonalds (a new idea in the early 70’s) catching fire and having to leave breakfast to evacuate the restaurant.  See – memories were made. Is that what vacation is for? Does anyone even know what vacation means anymore?


Webster’s defines vacation as “an extended period of recreation, especially one spent away from home or in traveling”. We all need a vacation away from work, but do you know why? 

Vacations are for getting refreshed, for stepping away, for reconnecting and for fun. Vacations don’t have to cost a lot of money – some of my fondest memories growing up were the vacations in a cheap old pop-up camper. Vacations help us reset our priorities. Vacations help us to remember that our kids are more important than our jobs and that life isn’t all about work.


My challenge to you today is to plan a week away this summer. It can be to anywhere, just go. Don’t stay home and paint the house and call that a vacation. Get away, have some fun and enjoy your family. Step away from email, and tell your office only to call if the building has collapsed.

If you are a boss, respect your employees right to their vacation time. They earned it; let them get refreshed. They will be more valuable to you when they return.

Summer is almost here; start planning your week away.

About the Author, Jim Brangenberg

Jim's Mission: To transform Christian-run businesses through mentoring Christian Business Owners (CBOs) by incorporating the servant leadership of Jesus Christ in their businesses, their home life and their walk with Christ.

Jim Brangenberg