Pastors suck at rest.
At least this is what I am coming to think. Maybe it’s not just pastors, maybe it’s accountants and librarians and lawyers as well.
Perhaps there’s a solid reason that God included “remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy” in the Big 10. He knew the moment we stepped out of the garden after sin had entered our hearts and we began to live under the curse that our tendency would be towards working, earning and feeding our appetites.
So Sabbath and rest aren’t things we are good at.
Sabbath and rest aren’t things I’m good at. And this, my friends, is a HUGE problem. It’s a BIG 10 problem. You see, I’ve worked and worked and worked asking God to bless all the labor I do for Him….but he’s been asking me to take a day off.
Ok…let me correct that. He commanded that I take a day off and I haven’t.
Pastor, we all know where that left me. Tired, over scheduled and heaps of excuses later and God’s tender Spirit whispering conviction to my heart, mind and soul.
I paused six months ago. I paused and heard the voice of God inviting me to rest, to abide and into a real Sabbath day.
It has not been easy. In fact, making room for rest and Sabbath have brought a need for more preparation, more creativity and more intentional living. Yet it’s been worth it.
Am I 100%. Nope. I mess up and over-schedule, I fall back into old rhythms and I fail to prepare so that my Sabbath is truly restful.
Yet along the way I’ve learned a few lessons and I’d like to share them with you:
- We are meant to work out of the overflow of rest….not work to rest. Sabbath should fill us, not just recoup what we poured out.
- God’s grace is evident on the Sabbath days. I mess up, I over-schedule, don’t plan well and end up working on Sabbath days more than I like but when this happens I experience God’s grace in new and refreshing ways. There is no legalism to his call to rest and his grace covers us when we don’t “remember the Sabbath day”.
- I am an introvert. For a good Sabbath day: LEAVE ME ALONE. Yet I found that even just being alone I would find ways to work so I began a simple experiment. Every Sabbath when I wake up and start to think “I’ll go walk at the park” or “I should paint today” or “maybe I’ll see a movie”; I simply ask one question: “Does this feel like work?” If the answer is yes, I don’t do it. On another Sabbath the answer might be no but if today the answer is yes-then it’s a no go!
So I’m on a journey of discovering what feeds, fuels and refreshes me in the Lord. What makes a day not just a do nothing day but a true day of rest. A true Sabbath. So that one day, maybe I won’t be one of those pastors that suck at rest.
If you have found yourself struggling to remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy, I would love to talk to you about ways I listened to God and have been exploring this commandment in my own faith journey! Drop me an email Korista@villagehouston.net