I was the teaching pastor at PCC, but with a new twist. For the first time*, the message at the Powhatan Campus was delivered completely via video. Our Tech folks pulled off something we had been hoping to do for a long time. If you were there, I'd love to get your take on it. I'm not reading emails or FB messages until I return, but that doesn't mean you couldn't send it to me or Beth Stoddard.
I wrote and recorded that message in May, before I left for my Sabbatical on June 3. (Read more about my Sabbatical here and there are other posts about it after that on this blog.) I've done a pretty effective job of letting go and disconnecting from my work that I didn't even realize that yesterday was the scheduled day for that message until Beth sent the picture (above) to me. Honestly, I didn't even remember what the message was about!
So, today, I re-read what I had written. I don't know about you, but I know that I need to be reminded regularly about how important Sabbath is. Why? Simple:
God never shouts at me about Sabbath. I never get an email from someone begging me to Sabbath. No text messages remind me to Sabbath.
But everything else in my life does those things. There are many voices, some shouting, some subtle, all waiting on something from me. The volume of emails is like the sands of the sea. The phone requires multiple charges each day from the never ending energy drain of vibrating text messages. And, of course, there is a Sunday coming every 7 days - each one calling for a fresh, creative, fun, Biblical, practical message.**
Life shouts, "There is not enough time!"
Sabbath is our way of smiling back our confident response, "God made just enough time for each one of us."
The world won't stop spinning simply because we Sabbath, but we will be more healthy. I hope my family, our Steering Team, my colleagues and friends will ask me the simple question, 'Are you taking your Sabbath?' and the important follow up, 'When was the last time you had a Sabbath?' I know I will ask this of some folks I know.
Maybe this is the kind of accountability we all need to help us keep this commandment.
*We did do a video message at the Powhatan campus one other time, a few years ago. It was of a pastor from another church. Nobody at PCC knew who it was. I didn't introduce it well at all. We didn't have a center screen. Nobody really knew what was happening. A few folks will remember this...it was not a good experience. But we get better with second chances, don't we?
**Let me be clear about this: I love my work, and I like the pace of it. The key, though, is the balance and rhythm that we often miss, and the Sabbath command is God's way of helping ensure that our Spiritual lives are a priority.