Friday was a lot of fun for me. I took my wife on a much-needed lunch and movie date and followed that up with a daddy-daughter date that evening (which involved a trip to Toy's R Us and dinner of her choosing -- and may or may not have included a stop at Rita's for some frozen custard). When we got home, she looked her brother in the eye and said, "I am not done with daddy." She had been craving this time with me for a while.
How much more does the Father want for us to carve out time in our busy lives for him?
The fourth commandment says, "Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy." In other words, it's important for us to set aside one day of our week for special honor -- a day given to God so we can be rescued and redeemed from a consuming world.
On Sunday, I offered four reasons why we need Sabbath:
1] To Rest
We think we are super heroes with an endless supply of strength. We are not. It's funny how the older I get the more Sabbath makes sense to me! I wonder at what cost to we pay the price of endless busyness? Sabbath is a gift to us from God (Mark 2:27), and it is God's way of rescuing us from the curse of toil and labor. Our modern life of working 7 days a week just isn't sustainable. It's no wonder people burn out mid-life!
2] To Reflect
The Sabbath is also designed to reconnect us with our Creator. The world takes 6 days from us (and would take 7 if we'd give it). We stop that activity one day a week to intentionally connect with our Source of Life and be reminded of the purpose of life.
3] To Recharge
Turning off a flashlight won't recharge it; it needs to be plugged in. We, too, need to be plugged in to our Source. Sabbath busts the myth of self-reliance, that lie that says we can do it on our own and don't need anyone but ourselves. God designed Sabbath to recharge our body, mind, and spirit for the week ahead.
4] To Rebel.
Yes, rebel. Sabbath is rebellion. When we take a day and give it to God, we are rebelling against the clamor of commerce and our slavery to our work. Sabbath helps us take a step back from the competing values of the feeding frenzy of culture that drains and consumes us. God gives us permission to check out! It's necessary for our survival to be able to stop and step out in order to seek God's sanctuary -- that sacred space where our souls are saved from being consumed.
We chop up our lives and try to keep it all together with our own strength, all the while being consumed by everyone else that wants a piece of us. Sabbath reminds us that we are not a commodity but people who are created in the image of God -- a God whose mission is redemption and restoration.
His gift of Sabbath is a gift of love.