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

Archive for August, 2014

Slogging Through

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

How many times have you felt like you needed to take a break, but, because you had so much to do, you didn’t?  How many times have you worked a long, hard week and there is still so much to do you know you won’t be taking a well needed rest?  Or, if you did, you would feel guilty? 

Yup, me too.

And here is what I have learned from keeping on when my brain and body are screaming for a rest. 

I make more mistakesClock in waste paper basket

I lose my creativity

I get stuck and can’t make progress

I have more head and muscle aches

I am less productive

I become easily irritated

I stop caring about what I am doing

To name a few…

Today is one of those days…so all I am going to say is I’m stopping for a rest…just like God commanded me!  And if God commanded it, how can I feel guilty? 

spa relax

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.”  Isaiah 40.29

Blessings,

Nancy

 

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Sabbath Basics

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

Let’s get back to basics this week. 

Sabbath rest is commanded by God for our benefit.  It is a command and not a suggestion.

Laboring for six days requires resting for one.  Our bodies, minds and spirits need rest to renew and replenish themselves for the next six days of labor.

Sabbath is a time of reflection on the week gone by, a time for refreshment that nourishes body and soul, a time to stop creating and enjoy the creation.  slider #2

Sabbath leads us to appreciate the more of life – as in there is more to life than a six day a week routine of work, obligations and housework. 

Sabbath is the long exhale after a week of inhaling the stressors of life.

Sabbath is possible if we make time for it and allow ourselves to be restored through rest.

relaxing-daySabbath reminds us that we are the creatures and not the Creator. 

Taking time for Sabbath just may save your life. 

Bend your will and obey the command.

Open yourself up to the possibility that Sabbath rest can be life-changing and life-enhancing.

Be still in the presence of God.

WILL

by

Marcia Falk

Three generations back my family had only

to light a candle and the world parted.

Today, Friday afternoon, I disconnect clocks and phones.

When night fills my house with passages,

I begin saving my life.

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“Be sill and know that I am God.”  Psalm 46.10

Blessings,

Nancy

Sabbath Brain Reset

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

It appears, according to a new study coming out of McGill University in Canada, that our brains need to have time to daydream, to be unfocused on tasks, to wander without multi-tasking and to basically have down time.

Without this down time, the brain becomes like a see-saw stuck in the up position.  And, according to this study, the amount of information we are processing every day through the internet, twitter, email, Facebook, instagram, and vine keeps our minds stuck and soon we are overloaded with information and no way to process it all. 

However, taking time to take a walk, listening to music, taking breaks, naps and even better real vacations helps the brain hit the reset button. Sharing their lives with each other In doing so, creativity is unleashed and perspective gained as the see-saw comes down. 

Obviously, taking a full Sabbath or Sabbath moments throughout your day is resetting your brain.

And here is where the wisdom of God in gifting us this 24 hours of real down time lies.  Scientists are finding that it is in the down times that we find solutions to those problems that have had us stumped at work or at home.  The creativity unleashed is the kind of creativity that brings about thinking that changes the world, discovers new cures and effects positive improvement in all environments. 

According to lead researcher, Daniel Levitin, “the time set aside for naps, contemplation and rest puts us in a powerful position to solve some of the world’s biggest problems.”   relax-for-healthSo it seems that  Sabbath time is a vehicle for solving some of the world’s biggest problems.

God is counting on us to use our God-given creative power to solve those problems…and to do so we are going to have to take the command to rest seriously with a much slower pace of life, some intentional daydreaming and a nap. 

Happy Sabbath, Happy Problem Solving!

“Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Mark 6.31

Blessings,

Nancy 

Sabbath Sharing

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

Accountability can be a difficult thing when you are the only one holding yourself accountable.  It is so easy to explain away, justify or make excuses to myself for why I am not doing what I said I was going to do. 

However, if I tell another person what I am going to do and he or she holds me accountable, those excuses don’t come off my lips so easily.  And, subsequently, I find myself following through with my commitment.

The same can be true for observing the Sabbath or taking Sabbath moments.  If I am the only one who knows that this is my intention, then I can fudge a bit.  However, if I tell another person about my intention or better yet invite that person to observe it with me, then keeping Sabbath becomes far more likely.

What about you?  Are you more apt to do something when you are accountable to another person? 

So often, I hear the longing in people’s excuses when they say they really want to take a Sabbath or enjoy a Sabbath moment but just can’t seem to hold themselves to it. Hammock There is an ache, a hunger and a deep need for this type of rest.  And yet we just can’t seem to make it happen or give ourselves permission to participate in this life-giving respite. 

Why not enlist a Sabbath partner to explore ways to observe the commandment to rest and refresh yourself?   The Sabbath was not meant to be a solitary activity.  It was a communal time of worship, fellowship, food and fun where no one worked and every one rested.

Attending church may fulfill this for you but in my experience church can be an hour wedged between work, committee meetings and chores.  If that is how your Sundays must be, then find a time to set aside for Sabbath rest with a friend or friends and reclaim the true essence of a time of renewal.

We were not made for Sabbath, remember, Sabbath was made for us.  It was made for our health, well-being and balance.  As a great scholar once said, “it is not we that keep the Sabbath but the Sabbath that keeps us.”

Running and Carefree

“These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go with the multitude, leading the procession to the house of God, with shouts of joy and thanksgiving among the festive throng.”  Psalm 42. 4

Blessings,

Nancy

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