Got an e-mail from a reader this week who had read my recent interview on the Proverbs 31 site. She asked some questions that I thought would resonate with other readers. She wrote:
“I have wondered at what God would say to us about Sabbath. I
also wonder at how we seem to mostly disregard this commandment more than the
other 9 in the “Big List” :^)….I have longed to know more but not much has
been taught on what Sabbath is supposed to look like. Somehow a nap on Sunday
afternoon doesn’t quite make the “grade” in my mind of what God is talking
Here’s just a small part of my response to this dear woman, who is earnestly seeking God’s will:
While you are correct that Sabbath is much more than a Sunday afternoon nap, that nap is certainly permissible and, in some cases, necessary–for someone is who driven, and always running. And the whole point of Sabbath, in my humble opinion, is that it is a day in which we have freedom from “making the grade” at all. It is sheer gift. It’s a day to enjoy God, a day we experience his unconditional love in a fresh way because we realize that his love is not based on our performance at all. It’s a day when we rest, and God provides. He makes the grade, he is more than sufficient. I think many people miss the joy of Sabbath because they wonder what they will have to do to “make the grade” with God.
What are your thoughts, readers?
I completely agree with you Keri. When I made the descision to begin practicing Sabbath in our house hold the first few weeks were very dificult. I have 3 small children (5, 4, and 2) and skipping the mundane chores for even a day can make for a very messy monday. After a few weeks of doing it though I was able to stop focusing on all that wasn’t getting done. My children love Sundays because they know that the only things on our agenda are Church, lunch, nap, then fun. I am so busy the rest of the week that what they usually hear from me is “…in a minute” or “…not now mommy’s busy.” They know that after we all take time to rest they will have my full attention.
I don’t always nap though. Sometimes I just use that time to really meditate on what was said in church or I’ll just lay in my bed thinking about our wonderful Savior. Either way my goal is to be still and focus on God. I feel that when I take the time to just be still with is I experience His love on a much deeper level. It’s not like my morning quiet time on a regular week day where I pray and meditate for a certain amount of time then rush off to my daily duties. It is much more peacful and I feel that God really meets me where I’m at even if it’s allowing me a guilt-free nap :o)
I have now begun to look at Sabbath as a gift. One single day a week when I don’t have to meet anyones expectations. I don’t invite people over after church because that would mean I would be working and not spending the day resting in Him or loving and playing with my beautiful little girls. I very frequently decine invitations to others homes on Sundays as well. Once I explain most people are happy to respect our practice and have us over another time.
Lisa, this is such a beautiful picture of what Sabbath can be. How wonderful. You’ve truly opened the gift, for both you and your little ones. way to go!