Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Sabbath Giftedness

In response to my post "Sabbath: The Day and Way" a friend on Facebook said:

I love how you said Sabbath was not given to establish WHEN we worship. That's so true and I've been thinking about that a lot lately, because ever since I've taken on roles at Church as a teenager up until about a year ago, Sabbath has always been THE LEAST restful day of the week for me. After a stressful/hectic Sabbath morning, I'd spend all afternoon recovering from a migraine - there was never anything nice about Sabbath for me except for Mum's home-cooked Sabbath lunch! A year ago I got sick (am still recovering) and had to back off from all my commitments and all of a sudden, Sabbath became an amazing day and I saw it in a completely different way. I'm now trying to figure out how to be involved without losing the true meaning of Sabbath... One of the thoughts I had was, is it OK to keep Sabbath on Saturday, but attend Church on Sunday instead, since Sabbath wasn't given to establish WHEN we worship as a Church?

My Reply:
Over the past 5 years of not being a pastor, I have thought the same thing! I've come to two conclusions:

1. Sabbath is about rebuilding relationships. With God (worship/reimaging) and with mankind (talking/eating). This takes different forms for different people. Some people find no stress in leading worship, preaching, teaching, etc. Other people are drained by it. Whatever rebuilds relationships on Sabbath is what you should be doing. Religion has nothing to do with Sabbath. No church, denomination or faith owns the Sabbath. Sabbath was made for all mankind. To heal us. To reconnect us.

2. Spiritual Gifts are given by the same God who gave us the Sabbath. If using your spiritual gifts destroys your sabbath bliss (rest/blessed) one of the two is being wrongly applied. Try using your gifts on another day and let Sabbath serve God's original purpose. There are gifted organists, singers, preachers, teachers and others who participate in Sunday churches and rest on Sabbath. Imagine the joy it must bring Jesus when He sees us fulfilling His prayer for us in John 17:20-23.

Another thing I have learned is that God alone knows the heart. God alone judges rightly. Whenever we judge the actions of others (especially in spiritual matters!) we risk being judged ourselves because we do no know the heart. Trust God's leading. Go. Serve. Love. Live for Christ as one who willingly sacrifices self to serve others - in whatever way the Spirit leads you.

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