I was in a rush as usual. It was Sunday morning and I had already been up and busy with the labors of taking care of my family for hours. It is the norm for me to be awake before they are, working to keep things running. I have five kids after all. I had already spent time with my almost 18-year-old son while everyone else was asleep. I made sure he ate, got him coffee, and drove him to church early to practice for the teen’s service. (He totaled his car before Christmas so I’m his chauffeur now. I need a cool hat for the job.) Now, it was time to wake everyone else, feed them, prepare lunch for after service, and in this particular moment- take out the dog.
I opened the front door and stepped out onto my large covered porch. The rain was pouring down, dripping from the branches of the Japanese Maple, and splashing into the fountain. I took a few steps closer to my porch swing, and fluffed the pillows. Straightened the blanket. How long had it been since I had sat there in the stillness just listening to the voice of God? I was overwhelmed with the urge to just stop.
But…I had responsibilities at church, and the kids needed to be fed, and lunch needed to be started….
Later on that day, I came across a fascinating interview on CNN. Dr. Matthew Sleeth, an ER physician, was talking about the importance of incorporating a “stop day” into our lives. He got my attention.
“For almost 2,000 years Western culture stopped…” he said.
Oh, I remember this. I thought. That is the way it was at my house growing up.
He went on..
” A “stop day” is a day you really cease from your labors. This really comes in Western cultures from the Ten Commandments. The fourth commandment tells us to remember the Sabbath. The word “Sabbath” simply means “to cease” — to cease from your labors.”
Ahh. So it turned out God was right after all. Not only was He right, it wasn’t about rules and regulations, it was for our good.
What do you know?
You can read more about it in Dr. Sleeth’s book 24/6 if you want.
Or you can just look up the word “Sabbath” in the concordance of the closest Bible and see what the Originator of the idea has to say about it.