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

Posts tagged ‘calendar’

Life’s Work

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

In my work with churches that are searching for a vision in which to carry out God’s will, I continue to be amazed at how few of them have actually gone to the scriptures for “in-sight.” Bible closed with a chain lock  They seek all kinds of gimmicks, tricks of the trade, and church growth programs to give their church’s the boost they need to attract new people.  When I use scripture to help them formulate a vision, some of the members get rather perturbed that we are ‘wasting’ time reflecting and Clock in waste paper basketpraying rather than planning a to do list. 

And I am not relating this because I feel superior to them or haven’t fallen into the ‘get going now’ mentality in my own spiritual life.  Oh no, I am relating this because this is pretty much how human beings operate when there is work to do.  Shoulder to the grindstone, rolled up sleeves and a clip board are sure signs that something is happening.  Head down in prayer…well, not so much. 

God knew we would need to be told that withdrawing to pray, reflect and rest was a requirement not a suggestion.  And even with a commandment and the example of the prophets and Jesus showing us just what God requires of us, we still think we have a better way of living life and seeking God’s will.work life balanceWhat if keeping Sabbath is God’s way of making sure our lives are full, meaningful and productive?  What if the commandment to keep Sabbath is not only a preparation for each week and a needed rest from our six days of labor but a metaphor for life itself?

In a recent article in the New York Times, Oliver Sacks, professor of Neurology at NYU and upon whom the movie Awakenings was based, wrote about Sabbath keeping.  He recounts his family history in keeping Sabbath. silent, pause or break time hand gesture As a member of an Orthodox Jewish family, paying heed to the call to Sabbath and all that entails was a vital part of his upbringing.  Like many children when they grow up and leave home, however, he strayed from the concept of Sabbath keeping. 

After being reacquainted with his cousin, Robert John Aumann, who was a Nobel prize winner, father and grandfather to 30 children, and an intellectual giant, he became reacquainted with Sabbath keeping.  In an interview, his cousin Robert John spoke about the importance of Sabbath to him, “The observance of Sabbath is extremely beautiful…it is not even a question of improving society – it is about improving the quality of one’s own life.”

Keeping Sabbath allows us to connect to our life force, to restore ourselves to energy levels required to live out the week and to see the beauty all around us.  And more…

Oliver Sacks has cancer and is dying.  He concluded his article by saying “I find my thoughts drifting to the Sabbath, the day of rest, the seventh day of the week, and perhaps the seventh day of one’s life as well, when one can feel that one’s work is done, and one may, in good conscience, rest.” 

Sabbath – A weekly rest and re-connection with God is also a prelude to eternal rest with God when our work here on earth is done.  Sabbath – A beautiful way to prepare ourselves for that final seventh day of rest after the six days of a life’s work are done.

soothing ripples

“…And the peace of God which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4.7

Peace,

Nancy

Google Calendar and God

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

For those of you following this blog on your own, it is a bit early.  For those of you on the email blast, it is right on time.  The reason it is being written early is because I am heading back to LeRoy this weekend and want to be able to post it before I leave.

It’s been just over 2 months since I moved to the Atlanta area and this will be the first time I’ve been home since then.  As you can imagine there are a lot of people I want to see.  And as you know there are only so many hours in a weekend.  I am being as intentional as I can be in scheduling as many visits as I can.   By the end of the weekend I hope to have made contact with a number of friends and family.  My calendar looks like a phone book at the moment.

It seems today more than ever we live by our calendars.  There are calendars on our cell phones, ipads, and computers.  Some of us still carry a paper calendar which we actually write on!  The stores sell beautiful calendars with scenes from every imaginable place in the world and every type of cute animal.  We are a time conscious and date conscious society.

When I use  Google’s calendar on my computer it sends me prompts telling me what is coming up.  It is getting harder and harder to miss appointments :).

As I looked at my rapidly filling up calendar I wasn’t dismayed at all because these are people I need to see – that I want to see.   These are people whom I miss and with whom I want to catch up.  I also know that I will have to wait until my next visit to see others.

I wondered then if I am so good at scheduling all these key relationships into my calendar, why don’t I do it with my time with God?  There are far too many days when I realize that I have literally scheduled God out rather than in by filling up my calendar with ‘important’ things to do or people to see.  Why isn’t God on my calendar in a time slot that is set aside just for God and I to catch up?

Wish I had a good reason.

How about you?  Do you schedule intentional time with God each day or is it hit or miss?  One way to make sure you have Sabbath moment time is to make an appointment with God on your calendar, Google’s, your paper calendar or wall one.  Write it in just like you would any other important appointment that you don’t want to forget.

Then, use the time to connect with God.  Have a cup of coffee or tea.  Take a walk or send a letter.  Whatever you choose to do be intentional with the time.  It belongs to you and God.  It may be the most important appointment of your day.

“Could you not keep watch with me for one hour?”  Matthew 26.40b

“Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the lake”…Mark 3.7

Nancy

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