A couple of days ago I asked the question How Do We Know When Its Time to Slow Down? That was the focus of my reflections during the retreat that Tom and I have just returned from. Doing the balancing act of work, hospitality and rest has been challenging over the last couple of months and I know that I need to slow down.
What I realized on the retreat however is that slowing down is not really about cutting back on my schedule. Slowing down is really about reaffirming my sense of purpose and regaining my perspective on what really matters. It is about giving time to the things that renew my soul and rebuild my body and my spirit.
Above all I have realized that slowing down, for me, is about regaining my Sabbath days. At one point I resolved to set aside Sunday as a day of reflection, refocusing and enjoyment. It seems however that I have forgotten that. This week I was reminded however that Sabbath is not meant to be a day of recovery from exhaustion. The rest of Sabbath is meant to be the rest of contentment and enjoyment, when we like God, sit and bask in the satisfaction of a job well done. It is meant to be a time to enjoy our relationship to God, to each other and to God’s good creation. As Norman Wirzba says in Food and Faith, Sabbath: has to do with the intense joy and peace, the supreme delight and the contentment that followed from God’s life-giving work. (45)
Sabbath is not just for one day of the week however. It is for every day. I know that savouring the beauty, the joy, the contentment of God’s life-giving work within me, within those around me and within God’s good creation is a lot of what disappears when I am too busy. Regaining those holy sabbath pauses that come not just on Sundays but every day when we take time to pause and sit in the joy and contentment of what we have done that is life giving and God affirming is so important. for me and I think for all of us.
So my question for myself and for all of us today is: How do you live out the Sabbath every day of the week?