For the busy person who wants to stay connected to God throughout the week!

Archive for December, 2013

Sabbath Moments and Christmas

merry-christmas-4Dear Sabbath Seekers,

This will be my last post until the New Year. 

I am going to take an extended Sabbath to be totally present during Christmas to God, my family and friends.  After a year of practicing Sabbath Moments, I am ready to take it to the max!  It’s been a very busy year and especially the last 3 months.  Whenever I get busy due to circumstances, scheduling glitches, or life, I find I cannot be as fully present with the things and people who matter the most to me.  It’s just the way I’m wired.  That’s why taking Sabbath Moments is a good practice for me to stop and be present at least for a little while.

Now I am ready to extend that to a two-week period. 

Taking time to recoup, to sit quietly with God, to share intimate time with family and friends is a blessing I/we often ignore or refuse to take full advantage of.  Many of us feel we need permission to stop being busy or get sick so we don’t need permission. 

God gave us permission to do this once a week.  He commanded us to do it for 24 hours.  We took this great gift and said, “Thank you very much, but, um…I really can’t accept it.”  I can just see God shaking his head and saying, “Your loss. You really don’t know better than I do.” 

So for Christmas this year, how about we give God a smile and say “Thank you very much for this wonderful gift of Sabbath.  I will use it as if my life depended on it.”  (Which by the way it does.)

And in the midst of celebrating the gift of Emmanuel, the incarnation, you can begin by taking at least a 24 hour block of time to truly put Christ back into Christmas.  (It really has nothing to do with a phrase but action on our part.)

“Bear in mind that the Lord has given you the Sabbath, that is why on the sixth day he gives you bread for two days.  Everyone is to stay where he is on the seventh day; not one is to go out.  So the people rested on the seventh day.’  Exodus 16.29-30

Merry Christmas and Happy Sabbath, 

Nancy

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Sabbath Moments and Sky Gazing

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

I recently bought a card that says “Lying on your back watching the clouds is never a waste of time, especially when I am with you.”  It is a sweet sentiment between human beings.  And even without another person to watch the clouds with, it is soooo true.   cloudsA little cloud watching is never, ever a waste of time.

But what if that card came from God?  What if God sent you that card?   Better yet, let’s assume God did send you that card.  What would you do?  Would you run out and look at the clouds knowing that God was with you?  Would you spend some down time with God just absorbing the beauty of the skies? 

Or would you say, “Not now, God, I’ve got a ton of things to do and I’ll never be ready for Christmas if I stop and waste, oops I mean, and watch the clouds float by.”  Unfortunately, I can hear myself saying this. Down time is idle time in our frenetic lives, isn’t it?  

And yet, this card sums up Sabbath beautifully.  Stopping your normal routine to gaze upon the heavens with God is a weekly command no matter what the demands are upon your day. 

During this season of Advent and waiting for the light to break through the darkness maybe we should take this sky gazing one step further.   Why not gaze at the stars, too?  Just as the Magi did so many centuries ago, we could watch the stars, look at the vastness of the heavens and marvel that in this whole universe we mattered enough to God to give us Emmanuel…God with us.

So stop.  Look up at the heavens day or night and be knocked off your feet by the power, beauty of magnitude of God’s love for us. 

“Moon and stars mounted in their settings.  Then I look at my micro-self and wonder, ‘Why do you bother with us?  Why take a second look anyway?'”

                                                                                             Psalm 8.3-4 The Message

Happy Sabbath gazing,

Nancy

Sabbath Moments and Breakfast

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

This is the season for Breakfast with Santa.  It seems like every organization, school, church and restaurant is offering the opportunity to have breakfast with Santa.  However, most of these breakfasts consist of a lot of children and their parents having breakfast while waiting for Santa to arrive.  Maybe it should be called Breakfast While Waiting for Santa. 

And since for Christians it is also a time of waiting, not for Santa but for Jesus, maybe having breakfast with God would be a great way to spend your Sabbath Moments.  And God will be there from the start not just come in at the end.

There is a lot of precedent in the Bible where Jesus sits at table and shares a meal with people.  One writer says that in Luke there are so many meals you can almost smell the food as you turn the pages.  I would love to have been in on some of those meals to hear what they talked about.  The conversation must have been rich.  

How would you start your day if God were sitting at your breakfast table?  What are the things you would share, ask or reflect on?  How would your day be different if God were your breakfast partner? 

Create your own breakfast ritual with God for your Sabbath Moments this week and pour an extra cup of coffee.

“Zacchaeus, hurry down.  Today is my day to be a guest in your home.”

Luke 19.5 The Message

Blessings,

Nancy

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