Labor is a Craft, Perfect Rest is An Art

On Sunday we shared about Sabbath. You’ll be able to download the sermon here. I shared about how the very first thing that God calls holy is the Sabbath. He declares that it is special. It is to be set aside and not used in an ordinary way. The point isn’t to become legalistic about Sabbath but to enter into the beauty and art of it. Abraham Joshua Heschel writes that “Labor is a craft but perfect rest is an art”. This is why trying to approach keeping the Sabbath from a perspective of rules always fails. It’s like trying to paint a beautiful piece of art through using a paint-by-numbers approach. The point is that appreciating the holiness, beauty, and gift of Sabbath is more of an art-form and less of a list of rules to keep.

So my goal yesterday was to inspire us to take a Sabbath. In Exodus 20:8 we read that for six days you will work and complete all your work. As I mentioned, no one ever completes all their work in 6 days. The point is that when we come to the seventh day, the Sabbath, we rest as if all the work has been completed. We leave it up to God and enter into the day. We seek to practice the art of keeping Sabbath.

So my question to you is what helps you to practice the art of Sabbath? What makes the day special for you and helps you to accept the gift it is?

For me Sabbath keeping is all about trust. It’s about trusting God to take care of all that needs to be taken care of. I trust him that he cares for his church, his people, and for my family. I slow down and have good meals, good conversation, and good connections with friends.

For you though what helps you mark a day as special?


Discussion Questions:

Adult Discussion Questions: What was the best vacation you’ve ever taken? What makes you feel really rested? How have you felt – when you didn’t rest? What about this sermon inspires you to take time? When can you take a moment to rest and truly “Sabbath”?

Questions for Young Families: Rather than talking about Sabbath take one with your kids. Talk to them how you are going to put away work and be present with them for the day. Share with them why its important and then do it together.

Challenge for the Week: Take a Sabbath

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