He made it a Holy Day
because on that day he rested from his work,
all the creating God had done.”
God is frequently described in the Bible as omnipotent, awesome, unchangeable, almighty and eternal. But as we can see from this very foundational verse, even God knows the value of rest.
So why do we—made in God’s image but nowhere near God’s capacity—think we can keep up a hectic pace indefinitely?
As the school year begins, with the acceleration of schedules for students, teachers, parents, staff and coaches, it’s good to remember we all need Rest. The churchy word is Sabbath. As the great Swiss theologian Karl Barth said on the topic, “A being is free only when it can determine and limit its activity.”
Does it sometimes feel like your life, or your family’s life, is enslaved to activity? I remember the day I realized—when my girls were 3 and 5—that the most common words they heard from me were, “Hurry up!” Swim team practice and church meetings and work deadlines sometimes converged in a perfect storm, and I’d ramp up into supermom mode of intense multitasking concentration, which had absolutely no space to notice the grace of a songbird or in a child’s expression.
Sabbath enforces an alternative. A built-in routine of downtime. About 24 hours out of 168 intentionally set aside for beauty, togetherness, friendship, and re-grounding ourselves in what matters. In short, time for God. We can take this time on a walk, in prayer, over coffee, side by side with someone we love, and… at worship.
The last thing I want is for worship to be another obligation. It’s not Sabbath if not freely chosen. My prayer is that you will find deep and meaningful rest in a couple hours spent every week alongside people who know you and love you, contemplating grace and considering how our grateful response will take shape.
Creating with you, resting with you,