Sabbath Rest

Candy blogs: Once again, I have missed sharing on this blog for too long. This has been a year of huge changes in our lives. I have had to take myself up on my own advice by working intentionlly on rest and balance. And our pastor has been teaching on Sabbath rest. What a blessing to my soul. The most important huge change is that …

I’m a new grandma!

It’s only been five days but it is already definitely everything that everyone who has gone before me has ever said it would be. I had the privelege of being present during labor and at the birth. So many things have gone through my mind in the last week.

Our daughter and her son

As I’ve watched our daughter experience her brand new baby boy, all the emotions of my own new motherhood have rushed through my mind. I’m remembering the sense of being overwhelmed, the self doubt, the confusion, the fear, the dread of the night, the blurring of days and nights, the exhaustion … but also the sense of wonder of God’s handiwork and a new contentment and the unveiling of a love I never knew I was capable of.

I see our daughter with that look on her face now. She has a sense of time just stretching out before her. She has all the time in the world to get to know her little son and learn how to take care of him. She and her husband are focusing on giving their baby the very best start in life that they can give. Everything else has dropped away. Things that used to be so important have lost their urgency. Their walls of their world have closed in and become very small. This child is their only priority. They aren’t letting things from the outside crowd out this priority; in fact, they are making sure nothing else crowds in.

They are experiencing rest … not necessarily physical rest (LOL!), but rest from the work cycle.

Sabbath Rest … processing Pastor Darrel Wiseman’s series

God rested. Why can’t we?

The compulsion to stay busy, just doing, no matter what it is, is a spiritual sickness. It needs a remedy. It needs to be cured.

This is one of my signature soapboxes. I lived so long in this trap, in this lie. Doing and doing, accomlishing and accomplishing, keeping very busy to avoid dealing with old baggage and unresolved issues. I never allowed myself time for reflection, for evaluating, for planning ahead, for peace. I avoided solitude and silence because the baggage and the unresolved issues would bubble up. Too mush work, too confusing, too painful … what is the next activity please?

I know there are other reasons for being compusively busy and I’m not going to pick on specific activities. My soap box is just to encourage young families to stop and think before accepting each opportuntiy that comes as to the effect it might have on the overall pace they want their family to have. Build in consistent times of rest from the usual pace.

Sabbath rest is more than a weekly break from the routine. It has a focus. It’s not just rest in general, but a focus on the Giver of rest, a focus on God. Sabbath rest will do several things for us. First, Sabbath rest will give us authentic enjoyment. Second, Sabbath rest is for contrast.

You know, one could be married for 50 years, spending every day in the same room with their spouse, but still never have an intimate relationship with them. Just knowing ABOUT God, just being in the same room with Him, just believing He exists isn’t relationship. If we never set aside time focusing on the relationship, no real focus on the Giver of rest, the relationship becomes distant, on the surface, awkward, irrelevant, formal, inconvenient. I don’t like the sound of those words, do you?

We can’t focus on these deeper things of life in the midst of the work cycle. This is why God modeled the concept of Sabbath. He knew we would need it. Jesus said the Sabbath was made for man, not to please God. He GAVE it to US for enjoyment and to be able to see the difference between work and rest. In our culture, our weekends don’t usually reflect a contrast to the work week. We cram in everything we possibly can. Then Monday morning hits and the impossible pace continues. Where does this leave us? How’s that workin’ for ya?

But most of all, Sabbath rest gives us a glimpse of eternity in the middle of time.

Have you ever thought about Sabbath rest in this way?! This was a wonderful thought to me. We are bound by time; God is not. He is the beginning and the end. We do have to work to make a living, to take care of ourselves and our families, to contribute to the economy, to express our passions and giftings and purpose. We do have to accomplish tasks within a prescribed amount of time. We do have to live by a schedule. But …

… interspersed in that work cycle defined by time we can actually experience eternity, timelessness. How? Because we can experience God Himself, who is an eternal God not confined to schedules and days and nights and deadlines and planning and cycles. We bear His very image. His attributes and character qualities invoke the intangible, eternal parts of this life. Things like love, compassion, mercy, grace, goodness, beauty. These are things that cause us to look out the window and ponder. They can’t be measured.

If we miss the Sabbath, the rest cycle, our souls can become lean, our personalties shallow. We forget that there is something bigger than ourselves and our puny world. And our schedule. And our accomplishments. And our activities.

Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.  So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”  Mark 2:27-28

Receive God’s gift of Sabbath … rest rest. He knew you would need it.

Choosing joy!

Candy

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12 responses

  1. […] Sabbath Rest (candytroutman.wordpress.com) […]

  2. Wow! My youngest is turning seven next month, but your post brought back her first month of life so vividly! It truly is a special time that is over in the blink of an eye. Congratulations, Grandma!! I look forward to when I am in your shoes!

    1. It’s such a powerful time. We can’t get enough of him. My heart goes out to my daughtehr and son-in-law but it helps to remember that we all live through it.

  3. peaceforthejourney | Reply

    I need an extended Sabbath rest! Thank you for this reminder. I know you’re just beaming with joy in this season…

    peace~elaine

    1. Have you and Billy ever considered a sabbatical? We just sent our pastor on one and we couldn’t be happier about it. I’m so excited for your new website! And, yes, I AM beaming quite a bit these days over our new little grandson. What a little SWEETHEART!

  4. Candy, such beautiful thoughts! Some things I’ve never thought of before. Thank you.

    1. Me, too, Shirley. The Sabbath is such an ignored concept. I have loved being convicted by this series.

  5. I’ve been so impacted by Pastor’s series on Sabbath Rest. I’ve needed to hear his words.
    Thank you Candy, for writing about it, here.
    BTW: That picture of Abbey and Ryker, is stunning!!

    1. It helps me process and think through things if I write about them. My thoughts just float around in my head until I intentionally think them through to conclusion. The pastor’s series has been so wonderful and so needed.

  6. Beautiful wisdom, here. and again, congratulations on the new bundle of joy- sent from Heaven above.

    1. Busyness only gets us tired. LOL! Thank you, friend Sherri. You keep me inspired. Our bundle of joy is truly that. And I can’t wait for you to join this exclusive club!!

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