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

Posts tagged ‘refreshment’

From Sabbath Moments to Sabbath Days

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

This week I have had the very unusual opportunity to have two days with no responsibilities.  And I used them to do only things that bring me rest, joy and space to be creative.  Now, some of you may think what’s the big deal? Believe me this is a HUGE deal for me. I am one of those people who teaches best what she most needs to learn.  Taking a full 24 hours for downtime and not for errands or chores in the midst of a regular week is not my MO.  Taking two 24 hour days to do that is unheard of unless I am on vacation or sick.  

One day was by choice and one was a surprise.  One was a weekend day where I just decided to shut down and be engaged in a full Sabbath.  The other was a weekday that caught me off guard and almost threw me into a panic because it wasn’t planned out.  Then, I realized I didn’t have to plan it out.  All I needed to do was enjoy it and by the end of it I had experienced a second Sabbath in the same week.

Ahh…sigh…bliss…blessing.

There is no doubt that taking Sabbath Moments to be with God keeps me connected in my busy life every day.  And, they are no substitute for a full 24 hour Sabbath in the rest, refreshment and renewal of God’s gift to us. 

So here is my challenge to you Sabbath Seekers:  Take a 24 hour Sabbath rest this week or at least by the end of the month.  Establish a habit of one a month – more if you can.  I know it may take some creative scheduling on your part but it will be well worth it.  Jesus often took a day to go off alone and pray and just be with God.  If Jesus needed it and could do it, it seems that we could follow his example. 

Sabbath is a sacred time that allows for healing of the body, mind and spirit from the trauma and wounds of every day living.  Create this type of space and environment in your life and let it be a non-negotiable. 

“Therefore, God blessed the Sabbath day; he set it apart as a holy day.”  Exodus 20.11b The Message

Be blessed, be still

Nancy

3 Steps to Daily Sabbath Moments

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

Because we are busy people it is easy to let our Sabbath moments slip by in the course of the day and before we know it a whole week has gone by with no intentional time alone with God.  Of course, if you take a 24 hour Sabbath at the end or beginning of each week, then this is not a problem.  However, if you don’t, then not taking time for any Sabbath moments does become a problem for our spirits, our minds and our bodies. 

So here are three steps you can plug into your daily routine to ensure that Sabbath Moments become part of your daily routine.

1.  Set the intention:  Put it on your calendar.  With all the date reminders we have on our phones and computers today, it is very hard to miss an appointment unless we choose to.  If you know you can’t do it at work, then set it for a time before or after.  Get up an hour earlier or make time with God your goodnight ritual.  Whatever it takes, be intentional with a daily reminder. 

2.  Pick a weekly theme.  For example, let’s say that you really enjoy walking and talking to God.  Set aside all your time with God (see above) for a walk for one week.  You may like to listen to music and journal.  Then make that what you do each day for a week.  Do you enjoy coffee and conversation with God?  Then, take your coffee breaks with God for a week.  Perhaps you are an artist and drawing brings you into God’s presence.  Get out the paints, charcoals, pencils, inks, etc and have an art class with God each day for a week.  You get the picture?  Choose a weekly theme that brings you pleasure and closer to God.

3.  Record your response.  By this I mean make note of how you feel after each Sabbath Moment period.  You can do this with a one word notation on your calendar or in your journal…peaceful, rested, refreshed, renewed.  You could even use one of those emoticons on your computer and simply click on an expression.  At the end of the week look back and see how your time alone with God was made alive in your day.   Now, I am also aware that some time alone will raise questions, bring about some restlessness or create some tension.  Record that too.  Pay attention to that because it could very well be the Spirit trying to get your attention.

Try this for a few weeks and see how it works for you.  After a month you may just find that Sabbath Moments are an indispensable part of your day and week.

“A white-tailed deer drinks from the creek; I want to drink God, deep draughts of God.  I’m thirsty for God-alive” 

Psalm 42.1-2 The Message

Blessings,

Nancy

Sabbath Moments September 14, 2012

Dear Sabbath Seekers,

I know this is a new format.  It is a move to the world of internet blogging.  Before today the posts you got were from an email provider that sent out “blasts” to those who had given me their email.  Now, these Sabbath Moments will have a wider reach – I hope!

So here we go…

If you have spent any time with a 4 year old, you know they have a lot of energy to burn.  And if you have spent any time with a 4 year old, you know they can crash and burn quickly when that energy runs out.  Both of these situations can be exhausting for those of us who care for them.

However, this week I found a place in between the hyperactivity and the tears of exhaustion.  And in finding this I learned a great lesson.  It is a Sabbath Moment lesson.

Arianna, my 4 year old granddaughter, is in a pre-K program that runs from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm so by the time we get home it’s close to 2 pm.  At that point in the day, she is a combination of pent up energy and wind down energy.

Her favorite things to do when she gets out of the car is to swing.  The other day while we swinging I said I was thirsty.  She said that she was too.

I suggested that we get a drink, bring out the ipad with some of her favorite music on it and sit on the patio and listen to music.  Of course, I also braced myself for all the reasons she would offer as to why this would not be very much fun for this rambunctious one.

Surprise!  She stopped swinging, looked at me and said, “Nana, that is a great idea.  You are the best grandma ever.”  Whoa…did I hear that right?  She wanted to sit quietly and listen to music. Yes, I did and she did.

We got our drinks, set up the ipad and settled into the chairs.  It was amazing to watch her put her feet up, quietly sitting and singing along while sipping her drink.  It was a lesson in pure relaxation and a testimony to how a 4 year old can listen to her body.

Isn’t that what God intended with the fourth commandment?  “On the seventh day you shall rest and do no work”.  It’s like God is saying to us “Sit down, put on the music that lifts your spirit and drink deeply of living water.”

Why not try that this week?  If you are used to taking a ‘coffee break’, then settle into a quiet place, bring some music with you and just be in God’s presence.  Get away from the noise, the hustle and bustle of the office or your home and just sit, sip, soak up the peace of God…if only for a few minutes.  If you are not used to taking a ‘coffee break’, then start!  It is good for the soul.  You can even tell your boss (or yourself) that is an order you have to follow for your health and well being.

Enjoy and let God bathe you in the joy of rest.

Happy Sabbath

Nancy

 “Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”                                             Matthew 11.28

 

SABBATH MOMENTS

Hello Sabbath Seekers,
This blog is written with the busy person in mind.  The person who has wonderful intentions of building time with God into their day, who wants to honor the 4th commandment to keep the Sabbath and who would love for there to be 25 hours in a day and 8 days in a week in order to do so.

Alas, you know who you are and I am one of you!

Several years ago following a workshop I did on Keeping Sabbath, one of the participants asked if I would consider sending out reminders to the participants who wanted to practice what they had learned but who often just got caught up in the day to day busy-ness and forgot.

Hence, began a weekly email blast on how to incorporate Sabbath Moments into each day.  These were simple suggestions and often came out of my own attempts to be in touch with God and honor the original intention of giving Sabbath to us as a gift of God.

Now, I’ve been encourage to turn it into a weekly blog.  And so I now enter the world of blogging and hope you find these Sabbath Moments refreshing and renewing.

Happy Sabbath,

Nancy Leport, M.Div., CLC

Tag Cloud