This year, I have written here, to beloved women of faith, about creating a slower lifestyle, about needing a slower faith process, about slower, everyday quiet times and about creating a Sabbath simplicity lifestyle, part one and part two.
Today, I want to suggest a wild idea. You know that struggle we sometimes have with truly resting once a week, on the Sabbath? I want to suggest we take that struggle and live it every day.
Mmmhmm. Told you it was wild. But no wilder than anything else I have said this year. Let's talk about it...
5 Reasons to Give the Sabbath Lifestyle a Try
Many of us worship busyness every day with just as much energy and commitment as we worship God on Sundays, and in our quiet times. And obviously, that means our culture snuck in to our way of thinking and living, and it's not what God wants for us.
Though he only commanded a Sunday Sabbath rest, I believe he offers and wants a restful lifestyle for us, in general, and that truly being a people of God will mean letting go of the hold that busyness and faster and more have on us.
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and My burden is light. - Matthew 11:28-30, NKJV
Jesus was describing someone there, who is constantly tired. That's us, moms! And he offers us a better way.
Here are several reasons why a daily Sabbath routine might be worth the trouble of putting it into place and sticking to it...
(1) A daily, evening Sabbath would mean creating a daily rhythm of rest instead of a weekly one, and we all need far more rest than most of us get.
(2) It might only require an hour or two each evening, and five minutes of rest here and there as you pause in between your activities, but the impact on your lives and on the lives of your family, could be dramatic. Imagine how it might impact your health and well-being.
(3) Your daily quiet time is a kind of Sabbath activity, a time apart where you stop, are still and quiet and resting, and avoid getting distracted by busyness and work. So the idea of a daily evening Sabbath routine is not so farfetched.
(4) And speaking of your quiet times, Sabbath evenings will lead to better and easier quiet time experiences. Because a wind-down Sabbath evening routine will make sleep easier and more restful, so getting up the next morning will be easier, too.
And you'll spend time with God that you might have spent yawning, stretching and trying to come to life, o quote Dolly Parton, or just staring into space as you try to get your mind to start working.
(5) As a mom, if you give your children a daily Sabbath experience, and model taking one, yourself, they will become masters of the longer, weekly one by the time they leave for college or enter the work force.
Our pace is determined not by the length of our to-do list but by whether we pause (and for how long) in between the items on those lists. -Keri Wyatt Kent, Rest: Living in Sabbath Simplicity
3 Ideas for a Daily Sabbath Lifestyle
(1) Give yourself five minutes in between your daily activities to pause. During those five minutes, take a moment to tune into God's presence and remind yourself of his sovereignty.
(2) Have a sit-down dinner with your family, with no electronic guests at the table.
(3) Create a restful evening wind-down routine for the hour or two before bedtime.
Your evening routine could include time alone or with family and you could choose the kinds of activities you do on Sabbath afternoons or evenings.
Know that no matter what you decide about the Sabbath, God's love for you is constant, and is wider, deeper and stronger than any of us can begin to imagine.
This post is just a gentle invitation (no new rules here) and you are free to reject it. Or, to fail miserably as you give it a try, the way I usually do.
Either way, it won't change a thing between you and God.
But even if you only do it sometimes and badly, I believe that the impact could be life-changing.
Even without intending it, your days will have more God in them. More awareness, more openness to his presence, more connection with him.
Nothing wrong with that, right?
See you next time!