Wednesday, April 26, 2017


When I was growing up, Sunday was defined by what you don't do.  Because it is Sunday, you don't go to the movie, you don't fish, you don't do any work (particularly the kind the neighbors can see like cutting the grass), you don't buy stuff at stores (of course, most were closed), and you don't do anything if it is going to be fun.  But, it was not a totally negative day.  You could go to Sunday School, you could go to church services twice, and you could go visit extended family.  And, oh yes, visiting cemeteries was allowed, too. 
Of course, to make it an even more difficult day, going to church required wearing Sunday clothes.  Those were the ones not worn any other day of the week.  And Sunday shoes had to be shined to pass an inspection.  It was even necessary to make sure the Saturday night bath included washing behind the ears.  Everyone always got up to a different schedule on Sunday which seemed to have a way of making family life a bit topsy turvey.  Even today one parent I know says that the devil is always sitting on her couch on Sunday morning to throw a monkey wrench in the possibility of peacefully going to church. 

Perhaps, most of us started trying to figure out the 4th commandment by becoming overly conscious of all the things you were not supposed to do.  Back then it may have seemed the only things permissible had to do with going to church, but as we learn there is far more to this sacred word given to Moses.  Sabbath rest is not just about not doing, but is actually more about doing.  God is not interested in making us miserable, but instead desires for us to have a joyful and full life which is, of course, where a right practice of Sabbath rest will take us. 

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