Sabbath Matters

It’s early Sunday morning. The last few weeks have been intense. Chrissy and I pushed to submit our manuscript on Tuesday. I had taken time off in October, so my workload was heavier than normal. Stuff around the house was backed up and pushed off until November. And now it is November.

I have worked early. I have worked late. I have worked over my lunch hour. I have brought work home. I have slept less. I have worked hard.

Today, I rest.

There is precedent in the Hebrew Bible for this, of course—keeping the Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments. But we Protestants often short that one a bit, because Jesus picked some grain on the Sabbath. (His friends took the Sabbath very seriously, right?) Then he said, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27—Please note, I think the Sabbath was made for women, too.)

So for people like me, of good Germanic and Scandinavian stock, take this to mean, “Yes! We don’t need that stupid day of rest! We can get 14.28% more work done if we work that day!”

Thanks a lot, forebears.

Because of this, of them, of my own frenetic self, I like work. I like starting things, making things happen, finishing things, interacting with ideas and people. But this day of rest was made for me.

  • It makes me acknowledge that I’m insufficient to do all that I want or all that I “should.”
  • It’s good for my body, as I sleep a bit more and I usually use the off hours to exercise.
  • My family appreciates it, as I spend more time with them and have a good attitude for them.
  • I volunteer to serve at my church, even arriving early and staying a while afterward, just to hang out with people.
  • Friendships are deepened, too, as we often make it a social day.
  • I’m just happier because I get to lay around and read or go for a walk or play games (and because of all the other good stuff on this list).

Today, I will teach kids at church. We’ll come home and make a big brunch for some friends to come over and share. Then, I think we’ll all hang out and drink tea before going for a walk in the big park next door and letting the kids enjoy one last beautiful Sunday before the snow flies. These friends will leave and I’ll read a book that’s sat on my shelf for months. Maybe I’ll nap. The kids will talk me into twister and I think I’ll make a pizza from scratch. I’ll watch a movie, kiss my wife, and go to sleep early.

As we’re all up early with the extra hour from daylight savings time, what’s your Sabbath going to look like?

  • Becky

    All I got out of this was that you’re making homemade pizza from scratch tonight. I’m holding you to it.

  • Sarah H.

    I seldom do “work work” on Sundays, but I often feel like they are full of catching up on all kinds of things at home. The idea of laying on the couch and reading a book is a far-off fantasy. Maybe my 4 year old and 1.5 year old have something to do with this, but I don’t feel like it’s their fault really. Perhaps it’s all about attitude — you are excited about making your homemade pizza, and I am grumpy about thinking of something to make for supper!