Sabbath Time

Scripture: Mark 3:1-6
January 21, 2015

“Is it legal on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” Mark 3:4

While the religious leaders made following the Sabbath a black and white thing.  Meaning that they really, really refrained from work or at the least tried to catch those they didn’t like working on the Sabbath, I think we have in many ways gone the opposite way. 
We don’t take time off.  Many of us take our smart phones to the dinner table and answer work related messages while passing the peas.  Many of us take work home with us and are now functioning like doctors being on call all of the time.
We don’t intentionally take time away from all that we do.  I think Jesus was advocating for caring for those on the Sabbath but he still took time away from all that he did to be with God.
I take Friday’s off as an intentional day to rest from my work as a pastor.
On Friday’s I try really hard not to check my email, or to answer calls from congregants unless it is an emergency.  I was told early in my professional career that every pastor needs a day in the week when they are not thinking about church.
So I try and mentally take a break.  It just happens that this past Friday my husband changed our cell phone carrier and it wasn’t a smooth transition.  I went without a phone for about 24 hours.  We don’t have a home phone, so I literally went without a phone for 24 hours.  And after I got over the panic of it all (and let the one family with a congregant in the hospital know how to reach me), it was really nice.
I found that I interacted with the people around me with more focused attention.  I felt at ease (to a point) not hearing the phone buzz with calls or text messages.  And then a little panic would set in since no one knew that I was without a phone.
Sabbath time is a time to remember that we need God and we need rest.  We need to take time away from our work in order to gain perspective and to care for our souls.
Sabbath time is a time to find healing and to respond to the needs of our neighbors.
Prayer: God help me find time for Sabbath so I can rest and enjoy life!  Amen.


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