Scripture: Mark 2:23-3:6
Key verses: (2:27-28, 3:1-2) Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath; 28 so the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”
Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand. 2 They watched him to see whether he would cure him on the sabbath, so that they might accuse him.
Reflection: The youth from Myers Park Presbyterian Church are at Montreat this week with 1,200 other youth from across the country. Our youth are tired. Not just physically tired but emotionally tired. We all live over-programmed and under-processed days and our young people are no different. Sabbath gives us the permission we need to stop. Sabbath is a gift given by God to restore our souls. The root word for Sabbath literally means “to stop”, not collapse, hide, distract or avoid. We tend to treat Sabbath rest as that bubble bath or nap that will save you from exhaustion. Holy rest, Sabbath, comes long before that time in the middle of every week. Sabbath moments are more than a bubble bath or sleep. Sabbath requires intentionality.
Keeping Sabbath offers us the God-given gift of holy rest. It allows us time to look at ourselves and at our lives apart from the everyday world. More important, it offers extended time and space to give thanks and praise to God for the many gifts in our lives. Sabbath is time that you set aside, regardless of the day.
Consider the faith practice of Sabbath. Take time to stop in the middle of this crazy week to ask, consider, and answer the questions that will lead to a more complete and joyful life. Sabbath is a faith practice that has the potential to redirect our days, inviting Christ in to bring transformation.
Prayer: Here in this moment, God, I am still before you. Surround me with your loving presence until I can breathe easy. Guide me in this Sabbath moment and always. Amen.
Author: Michelle Thomas-Bush
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].