So first of all, why should you prepare for a day of rest? Seems counter-intuitive right? The Sabbath is a day in the week- could be any- where you enjoy all of the work that you have done throughout the week. The catch: you only get one. Rest should be built into your schedule but Sabbath should be more than just your typical day.
If you don’t prepare for it, you just might miss it. I know I have countless times. Preparing for the Sabbath will enable you to be fully present, not worried about the homework that is due on Monday or the projects that aren’t finished at work. The Sabbath needs to be a day set apart so you have to prepare for it.
The Day Before the Sabbath
Typically, after I have finished all of my work for the day, I watch a movie, play a game with my family, or read a book. The night before your Sabbath should be different though. Think of it as the last stretch in a marathon- you’re tired, mentally exhausted, maybe even a little bit sweaty but it’s not time to rest yet!
The Day before the Sabbath is when you should be preparing for your day of rest. Find a good place to finish your projects for the weekend, clean your apartment, and finish up the final tasks on your to do list.
It doesn’t have to be restful, but it can be exciting. When I know that my day of rest is coming up, the anticipation of putting all of my responsibilities on pause actually helps me to work harder and more thoughtfully. I hope the same is true for you! Lately, I’ve been trying sun-up to sun-down Sabbaths from Saturday night to Sunday night but you can take yours whenever works best for you.
When the sun goes down– drop everything! It helps when you have something fun planned that night.
The long-anticipated day of rest has finally come! There is a lot that could be said about the day of rest and I am no expert. Instead, I’ll just pass along a mental checklist to help you prioritize rest that I learned from John Mark Comer, a pastor from Portland Oregon. For everything you do, ask yourself two questions: Is it restful? Is it worshipful?
Is it Restful?
In my first blog, I asked a question that you have probably heard too many times to count. What activity recharges you? If you can answer this question well, your Sabbath will be a joy to keep. For a while, I thought that the Sabbath was about not doing work. I could not be more wrong. For some people, rest is cooking, for others, it’s exercising, and for some, it may be playing card games.
Whatever it is, do a lot of it. I love to get up and exercise. I feel alive when my blood is pumping and I am trying new things. I know that I also love getting out into nature and eating a lot. So, first thing in the morning, I try to check off every single box I can. When I can, I’ll wake up, go for a run or walk through nature and top it all of with a big breakfast.
Is it Worshipful?
If you don’t have a faith background, feel free to skip this section. Rest is important for everyone, but I would not be doing the Sabbath justice if I did not mention the spiritual aspect of it. I didn’t just stumble upon the idea to rest for a whole day each week. The Sabbath is the oldest tradition ever– and we are commanded to keep it!
A worshipful day is full of realizing the unique way that God has created you and the world around you and appreciating it! If you were born with a knack for writing, the Sabbath is a great day to write. If you have always been kind of good at picking out melodies, pick up a new instrument. Whatever it is, the Sabbath is a day set apart from your weekly rhythms where you can do whatever it is you are uniquely created to do.
Hopefully, this post serves as a starting point for your next Sabbath. There are so many great resources about keeping a rejuvenating Sabbath but the most important step is to just start doing it. You’ll get the hang of it and you will be so happy with the results, your Sabbath will become a day that you look forward to the entire week!