About a year ago I decided to start fighting for Sabbath rest in my week. I believe our society sees rest as a weakness, rather than a tool for endurance and growth. Rest can often seem lazy or self-indulgent, but I believe the God who created me, created me with limits. And because of my limits, I’ve been given the Sabbath- the surrendering my desire for productivity, the validation of progress and the satisfaction of busyness.
Though it is a gift, it can often be hard for me to set the to-do list down, close out of email, and just be. It’s the one day of the week where God simply invites me to be a human being, not a human doing.
We wonder why we’re already so tired when it’s noon on a Monday. We wonder how it’s already Sunday evening and we’re dying for another shot at the weekend, unprepared to dive into our week.
I think my biggest obstacle is my forgetfulness. I can often spend a whole work week relying on myself and my own ability, and I so easily forget my value isn’t tied to the things I do. Thankfully it doesn’t take much more than a moment of stillness to bring me home to myself, to rest in my truthful identity – that I am loved, and I am enough, apart from my works.
God doesn’t give me the Sabbath because He is rewarding my hard work, and He doesn’t withhold rest from me if I failed to get enough done in the week. It is His constant good gift to me, the thing I always need.
This Sabbath I decided to paint, not for a client commission, or for show, but for me. I wanted to paint so I could let me hands get messy and let my mind get simple. I gave God room to speak, and He met me right where I was, on the floor of my bedroom. As I layered paint, and pushed it around the canvas- I could hear my thoughts clearly, I asked God to begin to heal the parts of me I’ve neglected.
I think the Sabbath can be the easiest thing for a Christian to rule out of their busy life. That has at least been true for me. It’s hard to make space for it, and it’s so easy to assume you’ll honor rest when life slows down. But friend, this is the time for rest. In the middle of chaos and deadlines and responsibilities, acknowledge your limitations, and acknowledge the gift of rest. I’m so tired of hearing people complain of how tired and worn out they are. I want to see people who rest- people who honor their limitations and the One who meets them there with love. So I hope you don’t count yourself out. I hope you don’t assume you’re the exception. I hope you come to see you can enter your Mondays with readiness and even joy.