I think I’m too busy. Often, I find myself devoid of the wonder of God and creation. Struggling to maintain my focus on the primacy of God in my life. As it turns out, I’m not the only one – check out this excerpt:

Pharaoh was guilty of arrogance, presumptuousness, and stubbornness. He thought he was in control, that he had the resources to get around all the signs, and that he could outlast God’s desire to be involved in his life.

Pharaoh in Me on Servant Talks.

Because of this, I’ve been mulling over the idea of a Sabbath for the past few weeks. Asking myself, “What is a Sabbath and what does it look like? And how do I make the Sabbath a reality in my life?” I know that the Sabbath was created to serve humanity as we serve God. But that I must submit to it for it to do its work in my life.

It’s certainly possible for me to err in being too busy – always on the go, always working. And equally likely that I will be lazy or create a set of rules of non-action to govern my behavior. Either of these extremes have the potential to be my work rather than that of the Holy Spirit.

As I was talking with one of my pastors (yes…I talk to my pastors), he took my questions to heart and lent me a book – Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places: A Conversation in Spiritual Theology by Eugene Peterson.

Peterson’s treatise on the Sabbath begins on page 108. Here are a few bullet points from his writing.

  • Wonder and Responsiveness to God
  • Stop – Attend and Adore
  • The Sabbath reorients us to the rhythm of creation
  • Not keeping the sabbath allows us to enter into idolotry
  • We keep the Sabbath when we enter into a place of worship, gather with a congregation, and sing and pray and listen to God
  • When we design our own worship based on our priorities and desires, we enter into idolotry and fail to enter into the Sabbath
  • Sabbath and work are integrated parts of an organic whole
    • Either apart from the other is crippled
    • We can’t rightly understand the Sabbath without work.
    • Nor work without the Sabbath.
  • Sabbath is about God and how God forms us. It’s not about how it benefits us

The Sabbath is precedented and commanded by God Almighty. Lord, help me (and us) to learn to cherish and keep the Sabbath holy. Grant us the grace of the wonder of your presence in our work and in our rest.

If you’re working through the Sabbath and how to keep it, I’d recommend that you check out Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places: A Conversation in Spiritual Theology.

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