Friday, May 22, 2009

Today's Sabbath

I did absolutely nothing today. Well... pretty much absolutely nothing anyway. I did get up, showered and dressed. :) I did wander out to the kitchen and make myself a cup of hot chai. I did feed the dog (eventually). But the dishes didn't get done until after the kids got home from school. I didn't do any laundry or cook or clean. I didn't edit photos or do church work. It all needed to be done. But I did... nothing.

I admired the view out my window (even as a squirrel was making off with the remains of a tomato from my ravaged tomato plant). I finished reading a book (for fun). I picked up my guitar and worshiped through song for a little while. I spent some time in Bible study... and some time on facebook... and some time browsing the internet for hairstyles and swimsuits (ugh -- maybe that DOES qualify as work! ;)) Really, though... just totally non-work. Nothing.

I didn't set out to do "nothing" today. But somehow it just sort of happened. Part of me feels extremely guilty. Carl will come home to a messy house -- and he's been working hard 7 days a week. And I'll have to work twice as hard tomorrow (we've got guests coming the day after!). But... part of me feels... rested. A little less frazzled. A little more "centered." And late this afternoon I remembered something I'd read earlier in the week... and it all started to make sense.

In two different books I've been reading recently, I've run into chapters about the Sabbath (a day of rest)... and how
important it really is in our lives. It struck me as a little more than coincidental Monday morning when I realized I was reading about the "day of rest." My Facebook status the day before had listed just how nuts my Sunday was... and questioned, "This is the 'Sabbath?!'" Hmmm....

So... as I was reading on Monday, I was (and still am) full of questions. It made sense that we need that day of rest... that resting could even make us more productive (I do feel like I could accomplish more now, after a few hours of nothing!). But when do you do this? Sunday, for me, is filled with serving at the church, community group, and -- quite honestly -- feels nothing like rest for the most part. Don't get me wrong -- I love it. But I fall into bed tired, not rested. Saturdays... are usually filled with soccer games, or basketball games, or birthday parties, or.... Again, I enjoy watching my kids in their various activities... but at the end of the day (or even before the end of the day) I'm exhausted... not rested....

So... I've been wondering... just how DO we pull off a REAL day of rest? I think I had kind of a mini-sabbath today (I did eventually go to the grocery and load the dishwasher and will attend my daughter's band banquet tonight). It wasn't planned, though. And... like I said... part of me feels guilty. But I also feel... rested... centered... less frazzled... and more ready to take on the world. I needed those few hours of nothing. It's altogether too rare for me, even as a stay-at-home, self-employed mom.

So how do any of us manage a real Sabbath in today's society? Especially on a weekly basis?

Thoughts? Please share them in the comments section!


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