Friday, February 28, 2014

Observing The Sabbath
I am a Sabbath keeper, but I don't believe it has to be a specific day, for example, those in ministry can't observe a Sabbath on their day of worship if a Sunday, I realize many Sabbath keepers also observe the Sabbath on its original day, a Saturday, but also here, for those in ministry, according to their traditions and religious habits, can't keep it by definition on that day either. 

 Jim Holm former president of The Mennonite Brethren Seminary did a great teaching on the Sabbath that I sat under some years ago.  Sabbath is not a day of rest as we typically conceptualize in America.  A point of interest on this is the reality that God doesn't need rest, yet, God observed a Sabbath.  Our misunderstanding of Sabbath has to do with our Westernized concept of rest. The Hebrew definition of rest is not what many may think. Unfortunately there are different definitions and we should remember the aspect of God taking a Sabbath; does God really need to rest as most would define it?  As I have done study on this, prefaced by Dr. Holm's teachings among others, I have come to the conclusion that Sabbath is really more of a day of reflection, a day of communion with God if you will.  It is a day where nothing else matters as much as seeking God and reflecting on the things God has done through and for us, plus a reflection in part on what God wants for us. The concept of Sabbath has never been done away with, it is however unfortunately misunderstood, even by many in the church and Christianity. As a result, many really doesn't honor the Sabbath, that does not negate the things God has for us when we do honor the Sabbath, neither does it do away with our need for a Sabbath.

The Sabbath is for us, to rediscover the joy of communion with God.  I challenge those who are in need of such a thing to find a day that is convenient to make your focus God.  Make one on one time with Him as much as possible.  Don't do part of a day, do as much as possible, the entire day. Pick the same day, that makes it easier to get in the routine of honoring and observing the Sabbath. Seek God's face in the ways you feel compelled.  I normally will pick something through the day after prayer, sometimes it is a day at the zoo reflecting on God's creation of animals, sometimes it is a day in the wilderness reflecting on nature, sometimes spending time in prayer, sometimes, I believe God would have me literally rest, spending time in prayer, getting sleep.  It depends on what I believe God would have for me and how He would desire to speak to me on a particular day, but yes, I honor the Sabbath, for me each Friday.
www.mosaicwichita.comWhile there are times I have conflicts, I more than not take Fridays to spend with God.  It isn't a luxury, it is a requirement of my faith.  It wasn't done away with but Jesus did clarify it.  Do you keep and honor the concept of the Sabbath?  Why or why not?  I can just tell you this, I have found peace, heard God in the quietness and time alone with him. I have never regretted it but do often wonder why many who say they have a personal relationship with Jesus, love God, are followers of Jesus and a part of this thing called Christianity, have made excuses to not observe it. It is a concept that was so special that God wrote it down and called it one of his 10 Commandments.  Not a commandment to hold us at the place of feeling guilty but a commandment to get us to the place of having liberty and even more important than that, a time to have relationship with God.  While you are all important to me, I honor and value my time alone with God, hopefully this will move some of you who are followers of Jesus to reconsider your own time with God, hopefully observed through a Sabbath, whatever that day may be.

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