I have a confession to make…I am a 5th day Adventist. Now this is not to be confused with those who practice sabbath on Saturday and are known as 7th Day Adventist. See our 7th Day Adventist freinds believe that one should worship ONLY on Saturday and that worshiping on Sunday is the mark of the beast or something (At least I read that in this really scary and somewhat cheesy tract I saw one time) . Well mainstream Christianity chooses to worship or observe sabbath on Sunday since this is the day Christ rose from the grave. The more I think about the idea of Sabbath and study the scripture it is not so much about when you have a sabbath as it is that you do take a sabbath. Sabbath simply means to rest. Rest is very biblical because after God had created everything the scriptures say that he rested. If God takes a sabbath you can be sure that I need one and so do you.
Well since I am a pastor Sunday is a “work day” so to speak. In fact it is nowhere near a day of rest. At times it is one of the most stressful and busy days of my week. That is just part of the gig as a pastor and I knew that when I took the job. So the church I work for is gracious enough to give us another day off during the week because they know this. Many choose to take Friday off, I choose to take Thursday because I am so wiped out after Wednesday and I get more done on Friday with no one around. I say all this to say my sabbath is on Thursday….the 5th day of the week.
I am still learning how to take a sabbath. It does not come easy to my busy and hurried soul. My tendency is that even when I am “relaxing” I am thinking of something that needs to get done, or worrying about how some future event may go. This is exactly why God wants us to Sabbath. It is to take a day and remember that after all our work and effort he is sovreign God. By stopping my busyness for Him for 24 hours I am acknowledging my dependace on Him and that everything is not going to fall apart if I don’t work on the ministry today.
I’m convinced we need to re-learn the art of taking a true Sabbath. We are such a busy society and we never just stop to take a day and dwell on God. Where I live in Houston the pace of life is stupid ridiculous. It seems like everyone I know is going in a thousand directions like a bunch of chickens with our heads cut off. Why can’t we stop?
Now I don’t think Sabbath means you lock yourself in your closet and listen to the gaither vocal band all day, or do gregorian chants while watching the passion of the Christ. I believe it is taking time to stop, breathe, and enjoy all that God has given us. It is a time to worship God through enjoying time with family, taking a walk outside, going to the beach, the list goes on and on. I believe it is something that causes you to relax and be grateful to God for who He is and what He has done. So here is what I did yesterday:
1. woke up and played with Ava
2. Made grilled cheese for lunch
3. watched old gilmore girls shows with my wife (her choice)
4. played with Ava some more
5. made some coffee
6. read a book for a while
7. tickled Ava
8. Talked with my wife about what God is doing in our family
9. played with Ava
10. Ordered a pizza at 9:30 pm
11. watched House Hunters