Tag Archives: Sabbath

A Sabbath Rest

12 Apr

I’ve been thinking a lot this week about my inability to relax and have realized that I operate under the belief, “If I’m not productive, I’m worthless.” I’ve felt like I always have to be “on”, that’s there no excuse for me to ever not get something done if the only thing I was doing instead was nothing. Distorted thinking, I tell ya.

But, as with my food log, with knowledge comes power. Only once I recognize the reality of my situation and accept it, can I bring it before God to have Him change it. So that’s what I’m doing through prayer – and through observing the Sabbath.

I have often felt God call me to do the one thing that scares me the most. It freaks me out to think of an entire day in which I accomplish nothing. A day when the order of my house, the food in the fridge, and the piles of dirty clothes will stay exactly as they are from dawn until dusk. What will I do with all the time gained?

Reclaim my sanity.

This is, at its core, an an issue of faith. The question is, do I really trust that God is in charge of my life? If I do, then I can trust Him to work things out for my good, even while I take a break. I am not the one holding the plates in the air. I’m not the keeping our lives from imploding into piles of dust, dirt and mold.

But the very fact that I can’t take a break reveals that in reality, I believe I am indispensable.

So I see observing the Sabbath as a declaration of my spirit: I will, as terrifying as it is, put away my to-do list and relax, trusting God that everything will be ok.

“So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his” (Hebrews 4:9-10).

Construing days of rest

13 Feb

I like the idea of a Sabbath. Taking time to relax, recharge, read and spend time with family is always a good idea. I’ve tried in the past to observe a Sabbath – I once had the idea of a Silent Sunday, during which I didn’t listen to the radio, watch TV, or do anything on the computer. In essence, unplugging. It was a great idea, one I would still be inclined to do if it weren’t for having a little something called a husband. He was not jumping on the bandwagon of my idea so the notion fell by the wayside.

Other times, I have been just plain lazy on Sundays – taking a nap, reading, watching TV, pretending to think about exercising but never really planning on doing so.

But I wouldn’t say I’ve ever been really that intentional about setting aside a day for rest.

Maybe it’s because by my very nature, I already take plenty of time to relax. I need to relax or I’ll implode. Taking one more day for rest would seem like overkill. I guess now, with my current state of unemployment, I’ve practically got a season of Sabbath on my hands.

It’s kind of like date nights for me and Travis. I definitely see the value of them for couples who have kids but for me and Travis, who see each other every day and night, and spend a lot of evenings just the 2 of us, they seem somewhat superfluous. Why plan a specific night to hang out when we spend every night together?

I am not a person who can handle go-go-go. I can be busy for a couple of days in a row before I need a breather. Ideally, there would be a constant balance: busyness in the morning, then rest in the afternoon, and a casual evening. Here’s a sample Saturday: getting in the Word when I get up, going on a 3-mile run, attending a baby shower in the morning, stopping by the bank and grocery store on my way home, lying on the couch with a good book, taking a 30-45 minute nap, making a delicious dinner with Travis, having a glass of wine, and watching a movie from Redbox. I do also enjoy relaxing in the morning, then being busy at night but I much prefer to enjoying my relaxation time after getting productivity out of the way.

Today, as I was painting our new front door, I was thinking about the whole idea of a Sabbath. The Bible talks about there being 6 days for work and 1 day for rest. Yesterday, Travis and I bummed around on the couch all day, watching movies, doing crosswords, eating cookies. Then today, we decided to paint our front door and finish a windowsill. Isn’t that kind of backwards? Shouldn’t we have done the whole door/window thing yesterday and then used today to be bumcakes, as we say?

But I feel like doing more work on a Saturday, after a long week of work (or non-work in my case, which is surprisingly exhausting), is asking a lot. Usually by that time, all I have the energy for is reading a magazine or doing the previous Monday’s crossword (the day they’re the easiest). But Travis, on the other hand, is often freakishly productive on Saturdays. Especially the days he goes duck hunting or flyfishing. He gets up at the awful hour of 3 am, hunts or fishes for 8 or 9 hours, gets home around noon, and then instead of taking a nap like I expect him to, he gets to work cleaning up the garage, putting in windows, vacuuming out cars, and changing the oil. No matter what I’m doing those days, I always feel like a slacker compared to him.

I think I just have a lower level of energy than most people. Sometimes even just thinking about what Travis accomplishes in a day exhausts me and I’m ready for a nap. All I know is that I’m too tired by Friday night to wait for a Sabbath on Sunday. I need time to rest on Saturday.

What about you? Do you use Sunday as a Sabbath, some other day, or do you do something else altogether?