The Intended Blessing
God established Sabbath. It is a day to be kept holy and set apart from all other days. It is a time for resting in God. It is a time to know God better and to reflect Him to others. No matter what I choose to do with the day, this is what God intended.
The day is beautiful, rewarding, fulfilling and full of blessings! How is it, then, that I can miss the point of Sabbath at times?
During my first six months of Sabbath keeping, I struggled with Sabbath rules. My focus was on HOW to keep Sabbath. I had a lot of questions. Should I follow any rules? If so, which ones? What happened if I didn’t follow any Sabbath rules?
Ex-Sabbath keepers would write me and tell me how their whole Sabbath keeping experience was built upon following rules. They found it legalistic, burdensome, and suffocating. They felt like they were condemned to Hell for not doing it correctly. I thought, “This is not the point of Sabbath!”
I was reminded that Jesus already paid the penalty of death for me. I don’t have to worry about messing up Sabbath. My focus shouldn’t be about what punishment awaits me when I fall short of perfect, but rather what blessings I gain from spending time with God.
Kept in balance, the rules have a purpose. They actually help me succeed. The closer I choose to follow God’s guidelines for Sabbath, the more blessings I receive.
After reading some books and articles about Sabbath, I saw a reoccurring theme of making Sabbath about me. Suggestions of keeping Sabbath on whatever day was most convenient, filling the hours with things that made me happy, with the intent that I would be refreshed and ready to face work again.
It is tempting to make Sabbath about me. I certainly enjoy having a day off to relax and do whatever I please. It only becomes a problem when the day belongs to God. God wants me to spend Sabbath with Him. HE wants to be the center of my attention. He wants me to enjoy the time I share with Him and with others who are learning about Him.
The Sabbath day was created for my benefit, to bring me joy and blessings. It is a delight. It’s just that the delight should be centered in God and not myself.
When my focus is on my own condemnation or my own pleasure, I miss out on the point of Sabbath. The point is the true joy of spending the holy day with my Creator!
May your time with the Creator be blessed!
Until next time,