I don’t know about anyone else, but I for one have never been very good at taking a day out each week for Sabbath. Many people do, many people take a day away from work, technology, communications and all work related responsibilities. I have just never been that person. I get work emails sent to my phone, I always have my phone within reach, and I spend more time on social media than I even want to confess to.
But God rested, at least in the creation story in Genesis, an entire day is devoted to resting. I think we can see signs of that resting within creation, for example, winter. Winter is a time when creation seems to hibernate, where animals work hard all year gathering food so that when the temperatures drop they will be able to survive. Plants and trees seem to lay dormant during this season. If we look at it scientifically, we know that there is still work being done, but there is still a feeling of rest.
I have been strangely blessed to be experiencing a month of Sabbath, a month between jobs where I am experiencing a sense of winter Sabbath. Yes, there are things to prepare for and things to do, but I am also trying to find the quiet in the process. Seeking a time of rest and renewal, something I am discovering more and more that I am in desperate need of.
Now that I have hit the halfway point in this season of my life, I am beginning to think about how important it is to have a Sabbath, a time in one’s regular life, for quiet, for reflection, for a slower pace. But how, how do we do that in this world we live in where we are literally connected to the entire world with a gadget that fits in our pocket?
I have often talked to my youth about taking time to leave your phone home. Time to take a walk in which you aren’t connected to the outside world, time to hear the world around you in its natural state. Imagine how much closer we might feel to God, if we took a day, or an afternoon, or even a small block of time out of our week to just spend with God, outside of our regular devotional time. But a set time and place to be renewed, to hear and see things differently, a time to rest, not with a pillow and a comfy blanket, but a time for mental, emotional, physical rest.
I for one am looking forward to this season of Sabbath to continue in a different form as I seek this weekly time, a time to step away from the hectic chaotic world, and spend some time devoted to spiritual renewal and rest. I hope you will join me.