Sunday, November 20, 2011

Keeping the Sabbath

“Thus the heaven and the earth were finished, and all their multitude.  And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it…” ~Genesis 2:1-3a

“Remember the Sabbath day, and keep it holy.  Six days you shall labor and do all your work.  But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God... ~Exodus 20:8-10a

“But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, taking the spices that they had prepared.  They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in, they did not find a body…suddenly two men in dazzling white clothes stood beside them…the men said to them, ‘Why do you look for the living among the dead?  He is not here, but has risen.’” ~Luke 24:1-3, 4b, 5b

“On the first day of the week, when we meet to break bread…” ~Acts 20:7

What do your Sundays look like?  Are they days filled with beautiful worship, peaceful rest, and reconnection with your Lord?  Do they feel different from the other six days of the week? Do you look forward to your Sunday as the source of your strength for your new week? Or does your Sunday look a little more like mine…seen as something to survive, instead of something to cherish and keep?

Keeping the Sabbath. Something that does not come naturally to us humans, especially in this crazy-work-oriented-always-on-the-go culture we are a part of.  It is a Christian practice that I struggle with.  It is something that I have been convicted to challenge myself more on. 

Growing up, Sundays were honestly the most stressful day of the week (sorry family, but it is true).  Since college, I have been so involved in ministries that fall on Sunday, that it has been difficult to fully remember what the Lord’s Day is for.  Currently, because of my job as a Director of Religious Education, the bulk of my work falls on a Sunday- CCD, Children’s Masses, Bible Study, and Youth Group.  How can I still serve the people of my church and keep the Sabbath?  And how am I setting a model for worship and rest on the Sabbath?

Some of the things that I have been working on are practical.  For example, I try hard to do as much prep work as possible before Sunday.  Copies are made, video equipment is set up, and coffee makers are ready to go when I walk in on Sunday morning.  This sometimes takes rescheduling or prioritizing on Saturday afternoon/evening, but it is totally worth it.  Something else that I do is to guard the few “free” hours that I have each Sunday very closely.  I don’t fill them with anything if I don’t have to.  This gives me some extra time for prayer, to watch a movie, dive into Bible study, read a book, or take a nap.  These things help, but I still have a long ways to go.  I have decided that just as I prep the equipment I need for programs at church on Sunday, I need to start prepping my heart for Sunday.  So, sometime during the week, I am going to sit down and find seven things that will help me more fully enter into the coming Sabbath:

  1. A Song
  2. A Verse
  3. A Quote
  4. An Image
  5. A Blessing
  6. An Intention
  7. A Challenge

By having these seven “tools” already in mind, I hope that keeping the Lord’s Day will start to mean more to me.  That I will look forward to it.  That I will see that I am unable to start the week without it.  That I might fully understand that while I was made ON the sixth day, I was made FOR the seventh.  That the joy and grace received from true worship will shine through me to others.

And I’d like to share my list of seven Sabbath celebrations (say that seven times fast!) with you each week.  So, I’ll use blogger to set them to post each Sunday morning…’cause I certainly am not adding that to my Sabbath morning tasks :)

I’d love to hear how you keep your Sabbath!

No comments:

Post a Comment