The importance of a day off

I’m convinced that I am one reason God wrote the 4th Commandment (Remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it holy.). It’s possible that if I weren’t in the picture, there would only be 9 commandments, although I do know some others who have a hard time not taking a day off.

Sometimes people get all worked up about which day of the week God meant. I don’t think He got real worked up about it though. It’s about the principle behind the commandment. Right now, my Sabbath is Sunday. It hasn’t always been, though. It used to be Monday when I worked at Calvary Albuquerque. I taught once on Saturday night and twice on Sunday mornings, so I took Mondays off. Now since we just have the Saturday night service on weekends at Awaken, Sunday is my Sabbath…and I need it! I have to admit, though, as nice as it is to take a day off, it’s a struggle sometimes. I have an endless (and growing) list of things that need to get done, so taking a day off sometimes seems like a step back. Sometimes my wife even has to remind me that I need to just rest (thank God for her!)!

Monday-Saturday, my life is going at 100mph between graphic design, Lasaters graphic design, studying and teaching twice a week, as well as finding time to hang with my wife and my girls. Thankfully, God commanded us to take a vacation once a week. That doesn’t mean you can’t do anything productive, but it’s an extra excuse to rest and spend some extra time with God and those you love.

Some of my Sabbath activities include:

– sleeping in
– hanging with friends
– reading
– taking a nap
– family movie day
– brunch with the family at our favorite restaurant
– another nap
– play time with the girls
– taking a walk

I also follow a strict “no-answering-work-emails” policy. One email quickly turns into a bunch and before I know it, I’m back to work. I normally stay on top of texts and emails, but ignoring my phone for a day is quite relaxing. It takes me back to the 90s when I didn’t have that thing ringing off the hook all the time!

My challenge is that during the week, I tend to beat myself up if I find myself not doing something “productive.” However, from experience, I’ve learned that a Sabbath day spent with brunch, hanging with friends, playing with the girls, and taking a nap, is quite productive. It’s like the 15 minutes that my camera batteries spend in the charger. That 15 minutes is a fraction of the time that they spend getting drained in the camera, but if it weren’t for those few minutes, they wouldn’t be able to do their job. I’m the same way. I need to be recharged.

God isn’t above His own commands. He set the example, even on this one.

Genesis 2:2 – And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.

That does not mean that God was worn out after those first 6 days of creating stuff (As if, after 6 days, He was exhausted from speaking things into existence). He didn’t need to be recharged like me or some batteries. I believe He did took a break to set an example. He knows the benefit of rest…especially for us. He knows how healthy it is to take some time apart from our daily time with Him to “be still and know that He is God” (Psalm 46:10).

So obey ALL 10 commandments by taking a day off! Don’t take yourself so seriously! I promise that the world won’t come crashing down if you hit snooze a couple times or take a nap.

Am I the only one who struggles with taking a day off? I know there are other over-achievers out there who tend to think the world rests on their shoulders.

When is your Sabbath and what do you do on a day off?

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