By Lynne M. Baab —

Probably you are like me, and you study Old Testament passages about idols and idolatry from a wonderful distance. I basically cannot relate to somebody carving a small object or building a large, tall  statue and then worshipping it. 

The types of idolatry that I have to deal with come from a culture that emphasizes material possessions and action, and a loved ones of origin that emphasized competence and 1 ideal way of performing anything.

I recall my father expounding on political problems, describing what politicians must be performing. I recall my mother speaking about acquaintances, describing what they must do to resolve their complications. Every little thing had a clear-reduce answer, and my parents knew that answer. To their credit, they have been hardworking, self-disciplined folks who created a great life for our loved ones.

The influence of my parents, coupled with the materialism and emphasis on action in the wider culture, produced a stew of warped priorities deep inside me. I have a tendency to really feel hyper-accountable, as if the globe cannot go on with no my work and as if anything in my life depends on my challenging perform. This idolatry turns me into a sort of mini-God, my wisdom and action important to the functioning of everyday life for myself, my loved ones, and other folks in my life.

The Sabbath, far more than something else, has taught me that God is God and I am not. In the six perform days of the week, we are named to companion with God in caring for the creation and the folks who reside in it. My sense of hyper-duty is not entirely inappropriate on the six days, since I am a challenging worker like my parents taught me to be.

But on the Sabbath, I am named to quit all that accountable activity. I am named to rest in the arms of the 1 who genuinely does run the universe. I’m named to take pleasure in the abundance of a Creator who created the globe extravagantly, so abundantly provisioned that I can let go of all my efforts for 1 day every single week and expertise becoming entirely superfluous to maintaining life going. 

If I worked challenging seven days a week, that perform would harm me profoundly since it would nurture the belief that anything depends on me, and that I have – or must have – the wisdom and power to run my personal life. My challenging perform, six days a week, largely final results in great items since the 1 day of rest every single week offers balance.

As I’ve written in my two earlier posts on the Sabbath, a day of rest offers the chance to study our lives differently. We are freed from slavery. We can take pleasure in take pleasure in becoming a creature intricately made by a loving God. The Sabbath invites us to view ourselves differently than our culture teaches. In my case, the Sabbath invites me to view myself differently than what my parents modeled for me. 

The Sabbath inscribes deep truths in our hearts in an experiential, non-cognitive, transformative way. As I described in my initially post about the Sabbath, it took me about six months of an enforced Sabbath, when living in Israel, to commence to take pleasure in it. Your initially Sabbath day might  not really feel extremely important. But your tenth or twentieth may well!

In our speedy paced culture, deciding how to commence a Sabbath, or now to enrich a Sabbath you are currently practicing, is difficult. Right here are some sources I’ve written: