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

Archive for February, 2015

Lent and Sabbath

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

ash wednesday6Today is Ash Wednesday marking the beginning of Lent.  Many Christians will wear the mark of ashes on their foreheads today signifying their entrance on the path of Lent.  There will be Christians who will give up some things and others who will take something on.  There will be Christians who will enter into a six-week period of spiritual reflection seeking a deeper commitment to Christ.  And there will be Christians who will begin but get sidetracked along the way to Holy Week because life just gets in the way. 

To be honest with you, I have no idea which group I will end up in by the time Maundy Thursday dawns.  My higher self wants to believe I will go deep and long on this playing field and my realistic self isn’t so optimistic. 

It’s a lot like how I approach Sabbath.  Some weeks I am so on top of my game with Sabbath moments and time that I wonder how I ever let myself fall out of that life-giving rhythm and some weeks my discipline is anything but. 

And yet, I try, we try, and some times I/we succeed because somewhere in our heart of hearts I know, we know, how important these ritualized times of breaking away from the day-to-day habits are.  There is something compelling in the human psyche that draws us to periods of reflection on and awareness of the  deeper mysteries of life, our connection to them and what it means to live with a purpose beyond our own material needs. 

I believe that is part of the God seed planted within our souls that yearns to connect with the source of life, love and light.  And if I can nurture that seed enough over the next six weeks of Lent, I know that the light will grow brighter and warmer each day until the Son rises on Easter morning reminding me again of just how much God loves me.  And I also believe that if I take a detour off the Lenten path of reflection and sacrifice, that my God will still shine brightly and still love me on Easter; however, I will be the one who has cheated myself of six weeks of profound companionship and joy.  Woman praising and enjoying golden sunset

“For in him we live and move and have our being.”  Acts 17.28

Blessings,

Nancy

Snow Day Sabbath

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

Blizzard-buried-cars-SouthBoston-09Feb2013There is nothing like a snow day to slow you down.  With winds gusting to 40 mph and snow falling at over an inch an hour the thought of leaving my home was far from motivating.  And even though I was not looking forward to going out, I needed to.  However, after getting stuck in my parking lot before I even got out of my parking space, I knew I was in for the day.  After getting over my initial panic of being stuck and missing an obligation, I relaxed into what turned out to be a wonderfully peaceful day of Sabbath moments.

Why is it that we need a snow day, a sick day or a car breakdown to give us permission to stop and rest?  On the one hand it is a testament to our work ethic and on the other it is warning that we view ourselves as human doings rather than human beings.  And there are times when we need to be a human being and those times come more frequently than the occasional snowstorm, illness or car repair.

Which is why God gave us a 24 hour “snow day” each week to rest and recoup.

On my snow day, I read, -reading-nook_________________________________I napped, cozy bedI meditated and I journaled about how this unexpected lull in my schedule reminded me that I need to practice what I preach.  And one of the blessings of this day was that I was completely alone.  The time plus the solitude brought me to a place where my inner and outer peace were one.  I don’t know about you but having my insides match my outsides exceeds my skill set on more than one day a week.  This congruency or the feeling of being whole and complete in that peacefulness is another gift of God.  It was God’s shalom.  It was a sense that all will be well because at that moment in time all was well with my soul.

So, I asked myself that evening…why is it that I deny myself this sense of shalom, wholeness, peace and well-being in order to be busy? A question that I bet I will ask over and over.   I imagine my answers will be more of excuses than heartfelt replies and those excuses will make my life less than God had intended and I will have no one to blame but myself.

Glimpsing, experiencing, and tasting a day of Sabbath moments when God’s presence filled all the spaces in my external and internal environments made me hungry for that experience to be part of my regular routine.

7 days a weekAnd every seven days I can feast on it without apology or excuse – snow day or not.

“I set before you this day life and death, blessing and curse, therefore, choose life so that you and your children may live.”  Dt. 30.19

Blessings,

Nancy

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