Finding God in the Middle of My Everyday

That Elusive Sabbath

Everyone needs a sabbath. A regular time built in our schedule that allows us to renew, revisit, re-up, refresh, revive, re-rest, rewind, re-do, relive, remember…You get the picture.

The ‘re’ in our daily walk gets obliterated if we keep on going, never stopping to pause on our life’s journey.

So for me, I need a ‘re’minder to ‘re’institute that almost elusive concept called sabbath.

My friend Cheryll Hanawalt loves to find time to play. Through the years that I have known Cheryll and her husband Bill, I have seen their passion for setting aside time to play lived out. Now don’t get me wrong here, Cheryll and Bill work hard. As staff pastors at the Evanston Vineyard Church in Evanston, Ill., they work with passion and diligence in their call and purpose. But when it is time to take a well deserved day off, they have been known to make sure they have fun. They simply plan to play.

Now as I’ve observed their ability/passion to plan a day for play, I realize over the years I haven’t done a very good job in creating such a time. However, within the past few years, sabbath has become more of a necessity for long term survival so my husband Marty and I are definitely more intentional about keeping one – once in a while… several times a month… or not. You see the problem – elusive.

Over the past few years I have been researching the concept of time. Time, as we know it in our culture is Chronos – or by the calendar, by  the clock. It is time that asks “What time is it?” and demands a response. We tend to gear our schedules and most importantly and somewhat unfortunately our very lives around this concept of chronos time.

We live out our lives watching the clock, ticking off each day, just waiting for that magic ‘Friday time’ or whatever day that seems to ‘get you out of work time’. I frequently read on Facebook “Is it Friday yet?” as if that will suddenly transform us from work to play. But in doing this, living for a day of the week like Friday, we miss enjoying much of our daily lives and we miss out on planning our play days, our sabbaths.

We miss out on renew, revisit, re-up, refresh, revive, re-rest, rewind, re-do, relive, remember…elusive.

But there is another kind of time which is called Kairos time. Kairos is a concept of time that begs the question – “What is this time for?”

Oh, just the sound of that phrase transports me back to revisiting some sweet memories, some short and simple, others more of vacation length. To be able to regularly take stock and ask “What is this time for?” can give way to desiring sabbath – which is more than living your life just waiting for a Friday. Rather, it is living in that place where we can intentionally plan the renew, revisit, re-up, refresh, revive, re-rest, rewind, re-do, relive, remember moments.

So today, take a chronos time to ask a kairos question – “What is this time for?”. Then pause, plan and play. Out of that time will pop a great sabbath.

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Comments on: "That Elusive Sabbath" (3)

  1. Carolee Jenkins said:

    I heartily agree with you Sandy. For the past several years, Saturday is our ‘re’ day. That is the day that Bill has all day off and we have made it known to our kids that Saturday is our day. So unless it is a situation that they cannot find an answer to, we don’t babysit. We have had several occassions that we have felt the need to help out one of our girls, but usually they find their own solutions. On Saturday, we are slow to get going in the morning, we go to a matinee movie, usually around noon to 2 time frame. Then we go to church at 5 and then get dinner afterwards. We started going to church on Saturday evening when we were going to Willow Creek, but we have moved on to Christ Community Church in St Charles, because a couple of the girls started going there. We like to end our day at church. Sometimes we take food home and watch Huckabee on Fox or watch something we have on DVR and sometimes we go to a sit down restuarant. We just do what we like and make a day of it. Our girls get a little jealous sometimes, I think, because they don’t get to do that, but hey, we paid our dues and it is time for us… times. I remember being envious of my parents because at our age, they were playing a lot. Anyway, it is well worth the making time to ‘re’ with your spouse, which in turn, allows you to ‘re’ with your God.

    • You guys sure know how to play and good for you. Marty and I are really doing better at it. Our day off is supposed to be Mondays but that doesn’t always happen just because of the nature of our job. However we also know that we need to be more intentional about taking the day, planning some routine, not answering emails and phone unless it is an emergency. We are doing better at it and look forward to more playing. Thanks for sharing your story and I do believe that you could blog….:))

  2. Carolee Jenkins said:

    Sandy, you and Marty have far more people in your flock to interrupt you than our 3 girls, so it has too be harder to get away. I imagine it feels almost like you are being rude to ignore the phone or whatever comes your way at the time you try to get away. Hopefully, you can disappear once in a while, but then you probably worry that you will be suddenly needed. I hope and will pray, that you two can find a formula that works for you. It sounds as though you have been well blessed in the position God has put you though.

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