Sunday, January 12, 2014

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy 3

A pastor here in Tena told me that God had been talking to him about working on Sundays. He is a pastor of a small congregation and he keeps a pharmacy besides to maintain himself.

As a pastor, he didn’t work on Sundays, but he didn’t shut the pharmacy either. He had his workers to keep it open so that people could always come and buy something they needed. He justified it because the workers weren’t believers. They didn’t need to keep the Sabbath.

Then God started to talk to him. And he learned to trust God and keep the pharmacy shut on Sundays. He was very happy because he didn’t lose any customers because of it but felt that God was blessing him for keeping the Sabbath.

I think there will always be a blessing for keeping God’s commandments.

But it will not necessarily be an economical blessing. Ken Shigematsu, author of God in My Everything: How an Ancient Rhythm Helps Busy People Enjoy God says: “There are no guarantees that if we keep the Sabbath we will be successful. But honouring the Sabbath (and not overworking the other six days) will give us an opportunity to grow in our trust of God and experience his faithfulness. If we take time to honour the Sabbath we may actually find that we are less productive than we were before...God's provision for us as we honour his rhythms may be the grace to accept being passed over for a promotion, while gaining a greater sense of fulfillment as we do our work more aware of God, ourselves, and the people around us.” 

For me the Sabbath wasn’t put by God so we could produce more. Sabbath was made for man, so man can rest, not so he can be more productive.

We live in a world that wants to produce 24/7. We keep ourselves connected so that we can be more productive. So that even on your weekend break, vacations or just on your Sabbath, whatever happens in the work, can reach you.

In my own, maybe radical, view, the production has gone too far.

The people were't put on earth so they could work. We were put here, we were created, so that we could commune with God.

We aren't supposed to be independant and make it on our own. 

We are dependant on God.

Like Charles R. Swindoll says: “At least one indication of unbelief is the tendency to measure life's challenges against our own adequacy instead of God's promises. To enter our Sabbath rest, we must put an end to self-reliance - trusting in our own abilities to overcome difficulties, rise above challenges, escape tragedies, or achieve personal greatness.”

For me the Sabbath’s rest is very actual. Something the world is in dire need today. We need to provide rest for the people, we need to sanctify the Sabbath, and we need to do it in concrete way that enables people to rest on the Sabbath.

This is the third and last part on a three part series of reflexions of the Sabbath. 

You can find the first part of the series, here.

And the second part of the series, here.

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