Today I'm re-entering my day-to-day existence after being gone from the office for two weeks. I've spent the last two weeks doing ministry at two different camps. I was the pastor in residence at Mount Hermon's Family Camp, and the evening speaker at Redwood Christian Park's July Family Camp. Both were great experiences!Now I'm having to dig out of emails and phone calls that need my response. Getting away for a while always seems to cost me on the front end and back-end. On the front end, it always seems to take a ton of energy to "blast off" - to pack, make sure everything is covered and then get in your car, turn over the key and drive off. Then on the back-end, when you return home, there is so much mail and so many phone calls at home along with all the other emails and phone calls at the office requiring your attention to upon your return. It always makes me laugh because the front end and back-end of a trip away can be so hard that it can be quite tempting to never leave the office, or never take a vacation so that you won't have to face all of these realities. I'm sure some of my readers have succumbed to this temptation and rarely take vacations because it costs too much on the front end and back-end. But I've learned that no matter how much it costs me in the immediate, it costs me 1000 times more over the greater long-haul, if I don't do the work to blast off and then dig out. Yeah it's a pain, but renewal is soooo important. So as I'm digging out today I'm celebrating the fact that God has used my last two weeks away to renew me.