For most people, weekends consist of Saturday and Sunday. We live by a different set of rules in our house. Because of the obvious Sunday commitments, my husband takes Fridays off, and we have our week run Sunday through Thursday, with Friday and Saturday acting as the “weekend” for us. In some ways, it works great. We run a lot of errands during the day on Friday, when most people are still at work. Or we enjoy sleeping in. It makes things like appointments and going to the DMV easier to schedule. But in other ways, it can be frustrating. For instance, we have Memorial day coming up. For many people, that means an extra-long weekend. For us, it just means we spend the entire week following the Monday off feeling a bit out-of-whack, because Monday feels like Friday and I lose all awareness of what day of the week it is. Also, Sunday is the big day. I’d compair it to most people’s Mondays, but it’s a good day and enjoyable, so that doesn’t quite fit. I know a lot of people dread Mondays, but we don’t really dread Sundays. Travis is at his best when leading worship, and it’s the high point of his week.
So why title this post “Sabbath”? It’s because for many people, sabbath rest comes on Sunday. Not so with us. Usually Friday or Saturday ends up being that day, the day to relax, recharge. And sometimes, sabbath is needed sooner. I’m so thankful we are no longer bound to the rules of the Old Testament, where sabbath had to be on Saturday, period. No taking a different day if that was needed, no moving it around in order to accomodate travel or life or health. Nope, you rest on Saturday. Don’t rest any other day and don’t you dare work on that day. Jesus had to work on that with the Pharisees, and he never really got through to them. It’s not about restrictions. God’s laws have always been intended to protect our freedom. He knows we need rest, and He knows that sinful people who get caught up in the attitude of “it’s all up to me” (a form of idolatry, by the way) will work 24/7 without rest unless He commanded otherwise. Yet the leaders didn’t get it. They saw the law as a way of controlling the people. They walked around with their clipboards checking off who was messing up and how badly. The funny thing is, they never looked at their patrols as work, even though that’s what they were doing!
I could go on and on about their sin, but the truth is, I’m the same way. While I’m glad we can move around our sabbath rest today, I don’t always take advantage of it. Sure, I’ll rest, but I don’t rest in the Lord. Sleeping in, being lazy, watching television, all of these things are great for taking a load off, but they don’t really help me to recharge the way prayer and reading Scripture can. It’s an area I continue to struggle with in my life, and probably will for the rest of my life. That’s ok, because I know I’m a work in progress. Thanks be to God that He doesn’t sit up in heaven with an almighty clipboard. When He looks at me, He sees Jesus.