Sabbath Subterfuge

A sip of coffee, a glance out the window, another sip of coffee.  I am not fooling myself, these actions are distractions, inconsequential sideshows intended to postpone the main event.  “Sabbath rest” is the headliner of today’s post, but I fear that when the curtain rises on that topic, my on-stage performance will belie my off-stage beliefs.

Right within the worry I just voiced is my problem when it  comes to sabbath.  Resting rightly has become work, another task to be completed well.  It reminds me of what would typically happen if I was home sick from school.  Following lunch, I would be dispatched to my room to rest.  Usually I did not.  I would pass the time begrudgingly, staring at my clock, waiting impatiently for the required minutes to tick by.  At the appointed hour, I would emerge from my room, rubbing my eyes, yawning and the like, hoping my dramatic efforts would persuade my mother that I had indeed rested.  It was a performance.

Decades later I still engage in that charade only now it is before my Father in Heaven.  I disengage from activities that characterize my vocation and I purposely do things that will renew me and those that I love.  I have suggested and would do still that those choices are headed in the right direction.  The problem lies deeper, it lies within my attitudes.

God’s work week, depicted in the Genesis creation account, concluded with God resting from all he had been doing (Ge 2:1-3 ESV).  God then blessed that day and set it apart from the others because it was the day upon which he rested.  The Creator of time, modeled a rhythm of life for us: six days we labour, one day we rest.  That sabbath day is unique; it is a gift for us, it is a blessing, it is holy.

Where my attitude falls short is that I fail to appreciate sabbath as a God-given blessing.  I fail to accept that the work-rest rhythm as a necessary limit to my creatureliness.  I do not submit to the Lord of time, but slyly engage in subterfuge by advancing my case with God by working hard at resting rightly.

Sabbath rest should be a blessing I enter into, a renewal I enjoy, a rest by which I am restored, it is not something I do for myself or for God.  I doubt I fooled my mother with my play-acting, for sure I am not fooling God with my self-promoting stretching and eye-rubbing.

The journey continues.


1 Response to “Sabbath Subterfuge”

  1. December 5, 2012 at 5:33 am

    An attention-grabbing discussion is worth comment.
    I feel that you need to write more on this subject, it may not be a
    taboo topic but typically persons are not sufficient to talk on
    such topics. To the next. Cheers

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This blog is a place to wrestle with loving, leading and labouring according to the Jesus Way.


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