Now that we've looked at what the Sabbath is and why it is life-giving, let's bring things down to earth, where the rubber meets the road. It's time to talk about how the Sabbath might look on a practical level in our lives. In this final installation of the series, I hope put forth some ideas and answer some questions to help you determine how this day of rest might look for you
The Sabbath is life-giving because it breaks us away from the pattern of the world, turns us to the glory of our Creator and brings our whole being into submission to our original design. It tunes our spirits. It heals our bodies. It anchors our minds. It causes us to focus on the ultimate, rather than the urgent. The Sabbath holistically repositions us to look at God, not the work we have been given to do, the chaos of this world, nor the lesser and sometimes even false rest we strive to create by way of distraction or escape.
Work and Rest. There is immense value in both. A rhythm is set before us. A rhythm our bodies, the land, creation, the entire earth thrives under. There is a model to follow, a better way than the culture is pushing for—the Sabbath.
It was a friday afternoon when the phone rang. A woman from the lab where my baby got some blood work done earlier in the week was on the other end of the call. "Oh good!" I thought to myself, "They got the results quicker than I was expecting." To my surprise she said, " I'm so sorry, I feel terrible having to tell you this, but as I was going to test the blood from your child. I accidentally dropped the tube and then stepped on it.
We will always default to something. Our mental framework supports certain ideas, emotions, and thought patterns that have been set in place by our repetitive choices. When worry looms and lurks in the shadows of the mind and heart, will we default to our tendencies toward control and comfort, clinging to worry as if it holds even a single ounce of power bring about anything good or productive? Or — will we choose a better way? There is a default that leads to life and freedom rather than exhaustion and bondage.
My hope has an identity crisis, if you will. It goes by many names. At times, my hope is called Ability. Sometimes it’s Control or Comfort. I call it Financial Stability or a Respectable Position. Self-care or Me Time is a common title. There are even days I refer to it as Productivity.
It’s loud. So loud. Not audibly loud. The kind of loud that’s on the inside. The noise that clouds your thinking, bringing your mind to a slow halt. Paralysis of the brain sets in, leaving you wondering what tasks are important and what can be left undone, if only for the moment. Pulled in opposite directions, you constantly battle between doing the urgent thing or the one that is more significant in the long run. Then, there are the opinions of others. A low, and seemingly constant hum, adding to the commotion.