Sabbathing better next year.

First published March 11, 2013

We were talking about Sabbath on Saturday night in our Sabbath group. I don’t have time or space or energy to capture the whole conversation. But somewhere in the middle of the conversation, I said that many people don’t like the idea of Sabbath because they think it feels legalistic. They start trying to figure out what counts as work and what doesn’t. They start worrying about what other people will think about them. And other people like the idea but they think about how much work they have to do. The idea of taking one day in seven to not do work is too scary, too risky. So those of us in either of those groups don’t work very hard on trying to figure out

But most people I know, who are exhausted by the pace of their schedules, who are afraid of failing, afraid of not measuring up, who are adding busyness to busyness, who are spinning–most people I know in quiet private desperate moments think, “I would love to have a rhythm of life that would let me have one day a week to rest, to disconnect, to help other people, to not worry about what isn’t getting done. I’d love that.”

So instead of thinking about the legalism or the restrictedness or not know what counts as Sabbath or the long list of work that isn’t getting done, try a little exercise. Say, “What could I change to have more space in my life a year from now?”

And then take some time brainstorming.

Go ahead. Now.

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About Jon Swanson

Social media chaplain. Author of "Lent For Non-Lent People" and "A Great Work: A Conversation With Nehemiah For People (Who Want To Be) Doing Great Works." Writer of 300wordsaday.com. I help people understand. Understand some of the Bible. Understand what Lent can be about. Understand what it means to follow.

4 thoughts on “Sabbathing better next year.

  1. I think people take the Sabbath as a “do not” commandment, when it is a “do” commandment. God did rest, did enjoy and savour his hard work, did renew himself, did leave space for newness. The legalism results from the “do not” work bit. We don’t realize that we can “do” rest. It’s a being/doing day.

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