The Catholic Church is celebrating the Year of Faith. So I signed up for a daily dose of catechism. This one popped up a few weeks ago.
If Sunday is disregarded or abolished, only workdays are left in the week. Man, who was created for joy, degenerates into a workhorse and a mindless consumer. We must learn on earth how to celebrate properly, or else we will not know what to do in heaven. Heaven is an endless Sunday.
It’s referring to the Third (or Fourth, if you are a Protestant) Commandment. The biblical text is as follows:
Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
Six days you shall labor, and do all your work;
but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God;
in it you shall not do any work, you, or your son,
or your daughter, your manservant,
or your maidservant or your cattle,
or the sojourner who is within your gates;
for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth,
the sea, and all that is in them,
and rested the seventh day;
therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and hallowed it.
The verse from Exodus references Genesis and the creation story:
And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. 3 So God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it God rested from all the work that he had done in creation.
Oh man, I have so many thoughts on how this is (not) working in my life. The last two weeks since this posted I have been chewing on it, with a side of my mom’s recent comment that we’re a pretty busy family, and my months long obsession with finding the exact right trailer for my family, which ate up a fair amount of weekends.
On Sundays, we go to church. We’re home by 10:30. And then it’s play time. Or shop time. Or clean the house because folks are coming for dinner time. It is rarely ever rest time.
And am I joy-full on Sundays? As I’m playing or shopping or cleaning and cooking, am I mindful of God and His day?
Sometimes, like when we head straight down to the beach after Mass, and have a lovely day playing in God’s ocean. On those days there is always a time when I utter a prayer of thanksgiving for the weather and the sun and the salty sea water.
Sometimes, like last Sunday, when I sit next to my dad and watch my kids play with their grandma in the pool. On those days I am filled with the joy of loving family and memory-making.
And sometimes, when I have managed to get every single chore done by Saturday so that Shea can lay on the couch and watch his Bills in peace and quiet while I write or read or watch a movie with the kids, I am joyfully grateful for the rest.
But those Sabbaths happen far too infrequently. Too many Sundays are spent at the mall, where I can score $100 worth of clothes for $60. I feel victory and satisfaction, but not joy. And I am certainly not mindful of God while I am bargain hunting.
Then I realized this: every car we have bought as a couple has been purchased on a Sunday, which means we have haggled and hassled and played good cop-bad cop on the Sabbath. I’m trying to screw you before you can screw me mode is neither joyful nor restful, and it’s impossible at those times to be mindful of anyone but your own self.
So the truth is, too many of our Sabbaths have been rushed and crammed and cranky and mindless.
My spirit is itchy, which means we are out of Alignment and need a change.
I want to be better at honoring this Commandment. What can we do in our family to both honor the Commandment and instill in our kids the wonderful knowledge that God, in His wisdom and love, has commanded us to rest and be joyful.
I want Heaven to be an endless day on the beach at Coronado. Not endless hours of haggling with a used car salesman.
So if you’ve got thoughts, I’ve got ears. How do you keep and bless this day in your homes?
6 thoughts on “God Blessed the Seventh Day ~ Jen”
Ooh, hittin’ us with the hard questions before lunch. Dangerous! We plan. I know… boring. But, if we plan the week ahead, then it’s more the rarity that we are left trying to cram a bunch of have-to’s into our Sunday. Things happen – as they are wont to do in life – and we won’t be able to control the surprise visits, emergency visits/shopping trips for poster board no one let us know about until 2 minutes ago… Planning. It’s what’s for dinner. 😉 Good luck. LOVED that quote in the beginning for the daily dose. Gonna use that to check myself.
I was just telling my neighbor last night that I didn’t plan for this week and it was hard. Planning is the first step!
When did the sabbath change to Sunday. Saturday is the seventh day of the week. Read this and tell me what you think. http://bereanreport.wordpress.com/2013/09/05/did-the-seventh-day-sabbath-change-to-sunday/ You are onto something with the sabbath principle, however, there is a specific day that God blessed and made holy. It is time for the church to realize what day that really is. Blessings in spirit and in truth.
Interesting and though-provoking. However, as a faithful Catholic, I am guided by my church fathers. And I need to figure out how to keep the Sabbath before I can begin to question upon which day we should do it.
We have such a struggle with this. We go to the cottage on the weekends to work so we can move there. It has to get finished. And one of those days is Sunday. We’ve compromised by taking naps; and not having a rigorous Sunday work schedule; and trying to be more spontaneous about what we do that day; but it still comes down to the fact that we often work on Sundays…
I’ve justified it by saying that God provided that day for us to rest and enjoy him; it’s up to us how we use it.
Blessings on you and your family as you struggle through this.
For me observing the Sabbath happens when I spend time in His word. The more I soak Him up, the more I am restful. In verse 15 of Deut. 5 after the command of observing the Sabbath, the Lord says it is a day to remember that you were a slave and that He set you free. To me this is the essence of what the Sabbath is all about. I think you are on the right track about not wheeling and dealing on Sunday (or Saturday, or whatever day you can take to spend with the Lord), but it is more than that. He wants us to take a day in whole as a day to remember what He has done for us. In that remembrance is true rest for our souls which gives rest to the remainder of our bodies. Here’s to rest and blessings to you new blogging friend! 🙂