Resting On The Seventh Day

This past weekend has been one of the best in memory for me, my dear readers.

(I hope you don’t mind, by the way, that I call you ‘dear readers.’ Whenever I sit down to write my column, I feel like I’m writing a letter to my friends, so it just feels right to have a little nickname for you.)

Last week was a pretty long haul for some unexplainable reason. I felt like I had so much to get done and not enough time to do it. The days drifted by slowly, and I felt exhausted by the end – but I had completely forgotten about Sunday.

I forgot about the peace and joy that greets me with the sunrise on that day, and the grace of God that washes over me no matter what shape I’m in.

That is the peaceful rest that can only come on the Sabbath.

Now, don’t misunderstand me – you can take your rest on any day of the week. Mine just happens to fall most often on Sunday.

Also, I don’t mean that we just sat in chairs and took naps all day.

Sunday is my family day, my day to catch up and look ahead.

We spent the morning at church, the afternoon gathering groceries, the late afternoon having a cookout and then, we were invited to a bonfire.

As the sun went down, we chatted with friends, toasted marshmallows and marveled in the day that was quickly transpiring.

All the while, we were in fellowship with others, praising and giving glory to God for the gift He had given us: a break from it all.

I can’t tell you how good it felt. I don’t have words to explain the sigh of relief I feel when Sunday hits.

We need a day to sit back, reflect on our week and then look forward to the next week.

It’s like a tiny vacation from reality where we can calmly assess what has gone on, what is to come in the next days and also be rid of whatever baggage might have come with the past week.

“I don’t need that anymore, thank you – that week’s gone,” I said to the weariness that was trying to weasel its way in. “We’re starting out this week clean and clear, so move along.”

Sunday is an oasis in the midst of life, a timeout in the middle of the game.

I had never really thought of the Sabbath as anything but an hour at church on Sundays or something like that until my pastor discussed it in one of his sermons. In Mark 2:22-28, Jesus explains that “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”

This weekend, I learned how true that was. I need a rest for rejuvenation, restoration and replenishment. We all do.

If we do not rest, then we will run ourselves ragged until we collapse.

Then, what good are we? We will have nothing to give, nothing left inside ourselves that isn’t used up and then we burn out.

Take your rest, dear readers – then buck up to face the next week. You’ll be glad you did, and your life will be that much more joyful.