Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Sabbath -- A Day of Rest?

For as long as I can remember, Sunday has been my favorite day of the week. I have always liked to go to church -- though it was probably for more social than religious reasons at first. After getting used to the Sunday rules we had growing up, I don't remember minding them. We couldn't play with friends -- but we could play with brothers and sisters. We didn't ride bikes, but we sometimes went for family walks. We didn't play in the front yard, but we were occasionally allowed to play in the back. We even had games that were Sunday games that subtly taught us gospel facts.

Now I have my own family and I have to work harder at having Sunday be one of my favorite days. It seems that I have to get up early, make dinner, get me and my children ready, clean up the occasional mess (Gasp! We have messes on Sundays too). I sometimes am doing last minute preparations for lessons, or helping the children with some of their goals for church. At church I am often in the foyer with Dan or listening to Jake. Every minute seems to be packed with things to do and I have wondered before why it is called a day of rest -- and how I can make it feel like one.

I was reading a book once by Sister Holland (Elder Hollands wife). She said that "rest" means to enter into the fulness of God's glory. It doesn't mean, in this instance, to "sleep a lot" or "to recline in a chair". Thus, to try to make Sunday a day of rest -- I try to come closer to God. I have found that this takes preparation. I need to not have so many last minute lesson preparations. Dinner preparations need to be relatively simple, and I need to take the time, throughout the day, to remember the blessings I have been given. Admitedly this is much harder than you'd think. Sometimes I get grumpy, and tired. Sometimes I even feel picked on or lonely. But sometimes, like today, I pray to feel the love of Heavenly Father, and He grants me the blessings of feeling His love. I am then able to notice how many grand blessings I have received and I know that I will make it another week. I will likely not make it without being disappointed in myself at some point, but I will make it.

So, as you get to Sunday and start wondering why this is called a day of rest, remember that it can be. If it is a hard Sunday, remember to pray that you will get a glimpse of God's glory so that you can have it to hold on to throughout the week. I think He wants us to have that kind of rest every single week.


cold cocoa said...

Good post. We have a hard time Sundays. I wish the kids would take a special nap so that I could read or write in my journal, but it doesn't work that way! A Sunday State of Mind...I'll have to give it a better shot next week.

LC said...

Great message. That's something I need to remember every week when the day seems consumed with meetings, visits, choir etc!
Baby and I emerged from seclusion and enjoyed a full 3hrs of church yesterday. It was nice to be a whole family again. Keep up the good uplifting posts!You may consider adding a little music to the spoken word--ha.

Megz said...

Having dinner pre-planned and a good Veggie Tales buys me some quiet time on Sundays. And it sure helps if my Saturday was spent getting everything else ready. I can really feel a difference in my Sabbath mood if I was properly prepared for the day. Doesn't always happen, so I appreciate it more when it does!

T said...

okay - I'm making a plan to come back and read this Saturday morning, so that I can make a better effort next week. We always tend to be consumed with making sure everyone has their ties and dressy frilly socks (different children there) and that state of mind thing rarely happens after church because someone (guess who, it rhymes with quarter) is always complaining about what is for dinner before we are out of the church parking lot.
Next week, I'll achieve a state of rest for at least ten minutes - baby steps!