Developing a weekly Sabbath practice has completely changed my life. About 10 years ago, I was dealing with serious burnout. A friend recommended the book 24/6: A Prescription for a Healthier, Happier Life. That book started a wonderful journey to discover what Sabbath could mean for me.
What Sabbath Isn’t
Unfortunately, whenever humans get involved, we tend to give God a very human ego. The Sabbath doesn’t have to be the 7th day of the week.
Yes, God rested on the 7th day. But he didn’t have a Gregorian calendar, so the 7th day wasn’t necessarily Saturday or Sunday, as Christian debates would have you believe. It’s just the day after 6 days of work.
The Sabbath also isn’t necessarily a day to do nothing. It can be, but it’s really about not doing work. It’s a great day to spend with your family or friends or in my case my animals.
What Sabbath Is
Sabbath is a gift from God. It is a reminder that we are free and not slaves. Slaves have to work 7 days a week. Slaves have no control over themselves or their times.
We are free, because God made us free. The Sabbath is a day to exercise that freedom and spend a day communing with God. It is a day to stop working and just be.
Sabbath can be a way to re-invigorate your work each week. Your Sabbath practice can fill your soul with love and gratitude that you can pour into your work in the week ahead.
Developing Your Sabbath Practice
For me, developing a sabbath practice started with setting boundaries. I started by picking a day for my Sabbath practice and making that day sacred. No one but God gets my time on that day.
For a people pleaser, that was hard. I still struggle with the occasional Sunday request that I feel like I can’t say no to. But I do it as regular practice. I do NOT commit to anything on Sundays EVER.
Once I had a consistently free day each week, I started to explore practices that feed my soul. Things that fill my cup and prepare me for another week of work.
For me, Sabbath involves prayer, reflective journaling, time with my husband, and time with my animals. I make time for creative acts that don’t involve my business. Things like contemplative photography.
Sabbath also involves an unscheduled slow pace. I love my very scheduled, fast paced life, but I need one day a week that just flows without a schedule or expectations. Just a day to exist in the universe.
Do you already have a Sabbath practice? Do you need help starting one?