Over the years, I have done a lot of thinking about the Sabbath. About RESTING. I am thankful and feel very blessed to have grown up in a home where Sabbath rest was of the utmost importance. My parents taught me the value of keeping the Sabbath holy – of setting it apart as a day of rest. With my dad being a farmer, I now understand really, how important that day has been to my dad and mom. Sunday naps were a given and though I couldn’t always sleep, it was still time for quiet and rest. Something we all need.
Our Sabbaths a few years ago, used to be just packed. In fact, we were reminiscing about Sabbaths of the past and here was the schedule: worship practice, church, Sunday school, small group, bell practice, youth group, then hang out with kids at our home. We literally did not stop going until 10:30-11:00 at night. We both realize that with Dan’s job, his job does require work on Sundays at times. Although, the way the schedule is set up now here in Minnesota, we do not have youth group on Sundays. As the wife of a youth pastor, I have to admit, it has been the most refreshing feeling to just go to church on Sundays. I know that some things we could have said no to, like playing bells, worship team practice, and small group (which we loved), but the others were just part of Dan’s (our) ministry.
Now having a fresher look at the Sabbath and having a day of rest, I have learned how valuable it is to take longer rests.
Over the past few days, you have seen pictures of our vacation to Islamorada. We have felt blessed to be able to take the opportunity to go on a vacation – especially to somewhere warm! I have an odd love of finding travel deals and planning a vacation at a cheap rate. Why I don’t know, but it is something I have always loved!
One thing we thought of often on our vacation was how old our kids would be, if they were with us. We know if they were here on earth, we would not be in the Keys – but we said a few times, we would trade the vacation for having our two kids with us. God gently reminded us though throughout the week, through that time of rest, that He has our lives in His hands. We also know that the ability to travel right now, is a blessing too. Therefore, we are trying to make the most out of the situation God has us in.
We recognized this week that even though God is giving us no clear direction, except no direction at all (to just be still), that we are to continue to live in contentment in where God has us. Adoption? We don’t know. A healed heart? We pray. A stable heart? We are thankful. Each day that I don’t need surgery is a blessing. Each day that Dan and I have the opportunity to live out God’s calling our life? We treasure.
Being able to sit back and rest last week, reminded us of God’s goodness in our lives. We realized the continued need to find rest, relaxation, and refocusing. Learning to focus on what is important in life and not getting caught up in the events of any given week. Learning to take that break (sometimes more than just a Sabbath break), to learn more about WHO God is, in His creation.
We aren’t those “go find the nightlife” people. Put us in the middle of pure nature and we will be entertained for hours. There is so much to learn about God in His creation – in different parts of this world. And each of those places offers a sense of rest.
As we adjust back to civilian life in a way, we are thankful for the extended Sabbath stay and God’s reminders of His faithfulness to us.