Jan. 12, 2016

Genesis 2:2-3

By the seventh day, God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.

Happy New Year! Our New Year began differently. Rick and I left on vacation on Dec. 31. We spent a day at the Kennedy Space Center and then joined some dear friends and their families on a Caribbean cruise. The goal: fun in the sun!

There are sometimes overly demanding times in our lives. The last five months have been for us. Mid-December, I realized how much I needed Sabbath time. For too many days, I’d awaken after a short sleep night and contemplate, “What do I absolutely have to do today that cannot wait?” Most days had too many “must do” items. Some were things I had taken on. Others were work and family commitments. The unexpected and emotional ones make it more challenging.

As we headed to the airport, I wanted to shut down. I needed to rest and reconnect with my husband, whose main goal was get as much sun as possible. He accomplished this quite well!

Being on a cruise ship in which internet service had to be purchased at high rates meant e-mail, texting and phone calls were non-existent. My connection with the outside world was on the little TV I saw while working out in the fitness center. I didn’t always do a daily devotion. I didn’t make long lists of people to pray for. At week’s end, I contemplated doing some future planning. The thought was overtaken by laying on a deck lounge chair by myself. I ate too much, danced silly dances I nor my college roommates knew and realized how bad at trivia I am. Rick and I went to the library one day and picked up the daily Sudoku just for fun. Teenager Megan and I swam with the dolphins. We snorkeled near coral and laughed at the piano bar until closing time.

Some people night not consider this Sabbath. But it was for me. Rick and I ate more meals together in 10 days than we have in the last four months. I slept late on the mornings when I didn’t sleep well during the night. I believe God blessed these days and made them holy because I disconnected from the craziness of life. I didn’t feel rushed or pressed. I could just be.

This type of Sabbath isn’t long-time sustaining or practical. Every once in a while, it is important and necessary. My version of Sabbath may not be your version and that’s OK! Yet, if God slowed down and imposed Sabbath on Godself, why don’t we?

Rick and I returned to snow and minus degree days just in time to “remember” our birthdays. How can my skin respond so quickly to the dry Wisconsin air? I have things to do for two meetings tonight, have been on the phone much of the day and am trying to deal with an overflowing e-mail inbox. Before Sabbath time gets completely gets buried with real life, I want to encourage us to find times of Sabbath: daily, weekly, monthly and annually. God will see it, make it holy and bless it.

Lord God, too often we make our lives so full and challenging. We fail to remember how even in all the creating you have done, you took time for Sabbath. Help us determine how important times of Sabbath are for us. Help us make them meaningful, regular and blessed by you. Amen.

Blessings –


Rick does not like pictures being taken of him. But he was happy to pose at a beach on the British Virgin Island of Tortola. Photo taken by college roommate Barb Mickelson.

Rick does not like pictures being taken of him. But he was happy to pose at a beach on the British Virgin Island of Tortola. Photo taken by college roommate Barb Mickelson.

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