I am searching for the shape of my Sabbath. True rest is found in God alone. It is where I put down my “to do” lists, my worry, my striving, my demands and concentrate on God’s provision in all areas of my life. I become like a weaned child, as described by David in Psalm 131.
“O Lord, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me. But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me.”
I need Sabbath rest when my mind grabs hold of a problem or issue it cannot release and rabbit trails from solution to solution but cannot find relief.
I need Sabbath rest from repetitive chores that enslave me. It seems that laundry, dishes, meal prep, dusting… are never done.
I need Sabbath rest from responsibilities, the things that don’t get done if I don’t do it.
Many suggest setting aside a day, free from routine work so our focus is God. Although the Israelites were commanded by God to take a day this is a requirement of the old covenant. We are under the new covenant.
“So don’t let anyone condemn you for what you eat or drink, or for not celebrating certain holy days or new moon ceremonies or Sabbaths. For these rules are only shadows of the reality yet to come. And Christ himself is that reality.” Colossians 2:16-17
At this point in time a day feels like another project to me. Something to strive to accomplish. As I contemplate this, I make notes of ways I might rest in the Lord. My early morning quiet time is one way. Leaving my desk a few hours before dinner and reading a book in the backyard or praising the Lord in prayer or journaling. Finding a Scripture on which to meditate throughout the day.
Prompted by the Holy Spirit, I begin to notice ways to Sabbath rest. For example, in an email sent by the Navigators I discovered a one-sheet resource titled “How to Meditate on Scripture Day and Night.” This helps when we take a problem to bed with us and dwell on it as we fall asleep.
When our conscious mind rests, our subconscious mind keeps our body functioning. “Whatever your conscious was working on prior to falling asleep will be transmitted to the subconscious.” So, when we prayerfully meditate on the word of God at bedtime our subconscious will dwell on these passages rather than our problems and worries. (navlink.org/meditate)
Finding a Scripture to dwell on whenever I labor without ceasing mentally seems like one way I might find Sabbath rest. I will continue my pursuit and let you know what I find in future posts.
©2023 Susan Cort Johnson *All Rights Reserved
1-What are some of the issues that cause you to labor mentally at night?
2-When you lay your head on your pillow, how do you take your thoughts captive so you can find Sabbath rest?