Photo credit: Ryan Klinck

Photo credit: Ryan Klinck

The Rule of Life, Week 12
Andrea Lingle

We will practice regular Sabbath as a means of renewal so that we can lovingly serve God and neighbor
     -From the
MWF Rule of Life

Sabbath is a word that, for me, used to sound a lot like restriction. It might be a strange pronunciation, but it was not until I found myself practicing Sabbath in the context of community that Sabbath manifested itself into the practices of rest and freedom that truly reflect this ancient directive.

For me, Sabbath means willingly allowing what is to be enough until you feel the joy of who you are returning.

That means perfect isn’t going to happen. Perfect never happens, but on Sabbath I lay perfect down. On Sabbath, I do not compare myself to anything. On Sabbath, I release the pressure to become and allow what is to be enough.

These are voices of Missional Wisdom telling what Sabbath means to them.

     Sabbath to me is having quiet time, restful moment being ready to be filled up!

     Immersing myself in rest, reflection, and goodness in order that I might fully live into my vocation.

     Sabbath to me is a time of ceasing the “normal” routine, releasing the burdens related to it, and embracing some rest and the loved ones around me.

     For me, sabbath is quiet and rest with the intent of restoration.

     Sabbath to me is letting go of daily responsibilities and concerns in order to find peace and balance with yourself and those around you and God.

    A time to rest, enjoy and celebrate with God.

     Setting aside time to practice and discover what it is to "be still and know God" through rest and intentional action.

     A time to stop doing and simply be with God.
     A conscious time of allowing space to refill and refresh and, for me, not dependent upon a particular place or set time.

     Sabbath is a simple, but powerful and profound act of resistance against the compulsion to define myself by what I do.

     It is the time in the Creation Myth that God chose to rest, and we are invited to enter into that same rhythm of work and rest so that we can both do and be.

     My wife and I call it "down time" or "I'm gonna go check out for a bit." So we pass the ball to the other mom. Only recently have I gone back to the UU church that is truly my spiritual home. And I do so love that feeling of complete rest during the hour of worship.

     Sabbath for me is a stop on the path - something to look forward to that keeps you walking and, once there, allows you to gather strength to move forward.

     A time designed to cease from the pressures of this world.

I have always wanted someone to give me a step-by-step of what to do and what not to do to meet the requirements of rest. I know. I love rules. I sit on two dots, remember?

But, that won’t work, will it. Because rest is yard work for some and reading for others. Rest is unplugging for some and cooking for others. Rest is solitude for some and making for others.

Whatever rest is, realize that it is imperative.

If you will serve, you must rest.

     Even if you are a parent, pastor, executive, teacher, grower, maker, thinker, or mover.

If you will serve, you must rest.

     Even if you don’t have the time, money, space, freedom, or inclination.

Sabbath is restorative and rebellious. Sabbath is radical. Sabbath is fiercely asserting that today, this moment, grace is enough.

Because that is what Sabbath is, grace.

Invitation to Missional Mindfulness:

  • What does Sabbath mean for you?

  • How will you lean into a practice of Sabbath in this season of your life?

  • How has Sabbath changed your service?

The Missional Wisdom Foundation Rule of Life

We hope you are enjoying our study of the Missional Wisdom Foundation Rule of Life. This is our last week to focus on The Rule. This way of life continually blesses us in many ways and we hope that you, our Dispersed Community, have been able to share in that blessing. If you would like a very nice, framable copy of the MWF Rule of Life, you can find several options in our Merchandise Store.