We were looking at the spiritual discipline of sabbath just a couple of weeks ago in Source on Sunday. It’s a practice largely forgotten in our fast paced world, and we are guilty of not prioritizing this day of stopping from the ordinary. I think it’s a timely topic, amidst these unprecedented times, where we have literally been forced to stop doing life as we know it.
Sabbath literally means to cease or stop.
(Exodus 20 v8-11)
The Sabbath was a day to stop work, a day which was holy/ set apart / different to the others, a day to rest weary bodies and tired anxious minds. Sabbath serves as a healthy reminder that we are human beings not doings, that we have limits. Sabbath is a gift from God to us and not merely a religious exercise.
Jesus lived a full and fruitful life, yet it was never hurried. He was often found retreating away from the crowds, getting up early to simply take time out to be alone with his father, we even see him taking a nap amidst a storm. Yet in our hurried world, we resist receiving this gift. It is so counter cultural to stop!
I read an article in Christianity today and loved what the writer expressed:
“I want my children to grow up and know how to work hard. I also want them to know beyond the shadow of a doubt that grace is real. I want them to know that they were loved before they existed. I want them to know they will always be loved, and I want them to know that love and grace are just part of who they are. I want them to know that love and grace are just part of who God is.”
Sabbath is a day to remember our father God loves us eternally. God delights in you, and gives us this day of stopping as a gift for our physical, mental and spiritual benefit. Its good for us, yet we resist receiving it, and making it a rhythm in our lives.
We know for many, this is a challenging time of fear and uncertainty, but if you are stuck at home it is also an opportunity to receive God's grace into our lives, and the lives of our entire families. It’s a gift of God to be together, play together, talk about our faith together, and to have space to listen for the still small voice of God.
“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46v 10
It’s a time to recognize we don’t have all the answers or control, but he alone is our help, our security, we can look to no one else for our help (Psalm 121). We can rely on him for everything.
Psalm 4v8 says, “I will lie down and sleep in peace for you alone oh Lord make me dwell in safety.”
Let's take time this week to enjoy all God has given us, to hear that he loves us, to recognize he is watching over us, and wants us to enjoy his peace in every circumstance.
This week let's discuss as families:
- What can we STOP doing as a family to make one day a week different to all the others, to bring life giving rest?
-What can you DO as a family to make this day different from all the others, to make it the best day of the week?
Please comment below to share helpful tips for creating a family Sabbath day of rest and delight in God.