I begin with apologies to those of you who already know this and also if I have misinterpreted (through forgetfulness) any words or ideas herein. I just wanted to share my thoughts and thank those of you who helped me create such times as mentioned below. Teresa
I don't know why I so often think of Sabbath early in the morning, but today's thoughts grabbed me and made me think to jot them down before I ran off to the gym.
When I 'kept' Sabbath with my Jewish friends I was always so surprised it was Sabbath again already. I never really experienced that feeling, at least not to that extent, when I was a church-goer.
This morning's thoughts were about Sabbath being outside of time. The whole process that brought me to that realization/conclusion would take a while to share , but I ran through a lot of what I know about that special day--from the verses speaking to Sabbath (first 'remember/observe,' second, 'create/make') and then the pairing up of the days (Sunday with Wednesday, Monday with Thursday, etc) and the thoughts of 'what' is paired with Shabbat (Sabbath), the day created for us. It was here my thoughts became what I hope to articulate and share with you here.
Shabbat slows things down for us so we don't speed through our lives without time to pause. But more than that, as time passes so quickly, seemingly from Sabbath to Sabbath with no time in between (as alluded to above), Sabbath gives us pause, makes us pause, stops time, even more than being outside it as an eighth day would be--that 'eighth eternal day of the Messianic Age'--and hence it truly is wedded to Messiah.
As a devout Christian (and it's funny, but in my fundamentalist Christian days I never ONCE used that word) I attended church 3 times a week plus was involved in Bible studies, women's groups (with studies, often as a leader), Bible college, etc, etc. But there wasn't that separation I felt when observing Shabbat. And so, quite often, I find myself missing that observance. Along with the studies I was involved with within that group as well. Yet it was Sabbath alone that came around, feeling more frequent than any other activity.
So, what is it about Sabbath that sets itself apart--or, more rightly, I suppose--that WE set apart? It is more than just setting ourselves apart and setting this one 24+ hour period apart from the rest of the week. (It's funny, 'rest of the week' is what Sabbath is!) Something magical, mystical happens when we honor this one day. And as I've mentioned above, the one day of Judaism as opposed to the one day of my old practice.
Time stands still on Sabbath. We transcend the earthly bounds and ascribe ourselves to a higher plane of existence for that brief but wondrous period. Tears well in my eyes as I think of it and remember. I truly only experienced a deep and true Shabbat twice, though there were brief glimpses even when I first began to understand its significance before I even went to study in Boulder with the people who became my friends, who allowed me to feel like I had found 'my people.' Their graciousness is with me still, I guess, if I can recall those moments of separateness and joy, the being lifted out of the everyday into a special place that, now that I think of it, was like being held in the very hand of G-od.
Sabbath is our present experience of a future time (ooh, I like that!). A time when all will be at peace, the lion will lay down with the lamb, weapons will be beaten into plowshares, and the consciousness of the One, by whatever name you call it, will reign in all our hearts. Then, indeed, the Seventh Day, the day created for you and me, will be wed to the New Age and all will be at peace.
May this Sabbath be imbued with that essence for you, and every subsequent Sabbath until the Oneness reigns for all of time, world without end...
Live well, laugh often, love wildly :o)