Work six days and do everything you need to do.
But the seventh day is a Sabbath to God, your God.
Don’t do any work—not you, nor your son, nor your daughter,
nor your servant, nor your maid, nor your animals, not even the foreign guest
visiting in your town. For in six days God made Heaven, Earth, and sea,
and everything in them; he rested on the seventh day. Therefore
God blessed the Sabbath day; he set it apart as a holy day.
Exodus 20:8-11 (The Message)
Eyes slowly open. Clock says 4:30. Toss, turn, try to slip back into sleep.
Now it’s 5:30. A peek out the window shows the night is slowly turning to day. Light is changing. On the cusp of a new day. And then it comes to me.
It’s Sunday, the Sabbath day, the holiest day in the week.
My mind wanders to childhood memories of Sundays, a time when family truly honored the Sabbath, a day of rest as ordained in the verse of Scripture from Exodus.
In my family, Sundays were all about worship, Sunday School classes, and family time. The most menial of tasks were allowed but there were things that weren’t allowed– because it was Sunday, the Sabbath.
We weren’t allowed to go roller skating, attend a movie, play board games or cards. As a girl, I wasn’t allowed to do sewing or needlework as they could be defined as “work” and not a part of the rest we were observing. It confused me. Mama cooked and cleaned up in the kitchen. Daddy explained these were necessities of life and because the meal was something we needed, the cooking and cleanup were not work in the same sense of the word.
I cherish this gift of the Sabbath observed and passed along by my parents. I still try to look on my Sunday as Sabbath. I attempt to treat Sunday as my day of quiet and rest with my husband. We may engage in some pleasant activity, such as a concert at a local church or a drive into the countryside, but beyond that we limit ourselves to quiet time at home or in nature taking in God’s creation.
Sunday is the one day in the week I don’t deal with emails other than from family, with Facebook or Twitter, or my writing projects. To do so means I’m off in my little writing cave looking at the computer and typing away while my husband is in the other end of the house.
Sabbath for us means a time to worship and praise God for His gifts to us, to join together with our family of faith, and to quietly observe this special day together.
Soon Monday comes, and another week begins.
How do you observe the Sabbath?