I received a writing prompt challenging me to become more mindful of staying in the present moment as you go about your daily tasks. I was currently reading Sabbath, Restoring the Sacred Rhythm of Rest by Wayne Muller. I decided my challenge would be keeping the Sabbath on Sunday.
The fourth commandment says, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). I googled the Sabbath which the Hebrews observed. It said, on the Sabbath, we are to pause from our normal routines—our work, shopping, errands, activities, sports, television—and spend the day doing things that are spiritually focused.
I added a few more Sabbath rules like: Do not look at Facebook, leave my computer off and don’t watch the news. I planned to focus on scripture and be mindful of God’s presence all day. Saturday night, as I dozed off to sleep, I was excited about tomorrow being my Sabbath. I also put it on Norm and my combined telephone calendar at 6 am and set it to repeat every Sunday.
I got up Sunday morning, quickly showered, emptied the jar of make up cream, Beautiful Pacifique, that Brian our exchange student brought me as a gift in January. I told him I would update him with photos, so he could use it for marketing the product in his pharmacy in Denmark. After scrapping the jar clean I impulsively turned on my phone, took a selfie and sent before and after pictures to Brian via private Facebook page. So much for not using Facebook on the Sabbath! By the way, I couldn’t see any anti-aging change in my face after using the product for six months. Don’t go out and buy it!
We attended church and went out to breakfast with friends. Worship and dining with family and friends would be acceptable during my Sabbath. Half way through the meal, I realized, “I forgot to offer a prayer for the food and fellowship.” So much for being thankful on the Sabbath. I took half my breakfast home, so won’t have to fix lunch. Norm decided to make chicken noodle soup for our evening meal. I won’t help him cook, it is my Sabbath!
Am not sure what other cultures do on the sabbath, but after eating, Norm and I decided to go walk a couple laps in the mall. After all we need to stay healthy, so we can serve our Lord, and it is too hot to walk outside in Arizona.
On our way home, I remembered the solar fountain I ordered off Facebook that was delivered last week. You put it in a birdbath and it sprays water. I suggested we stop by Lowe’s to find something for my solar fountain to float in. After purchasing a large saucer, I remembered, it was my Sabbath, I shouldn’t have been shopping. I decided to postpone putting it together until tomorrow because I shouldn’t work on my Sabbath.
I knew watching television was not acceptable on my Sabbath, but as I walked into our home I could not stand it. I grabbed the remote and scanned numerous news channels. I had to find out what was going on with the young boys that were in the cave in Thailand. After all, I have been praying for them, as have many people around the world. I needed to know my prayers were being answered and that they were still safe. God would understand why I had to watch television on the Sabbath!
I kept thinking about my solar fountain all day, and finally convinced myself it wouldn’t be work, it would be fun putting it together. It would bring me joy on my Sabbath. Well, it didn’t work like I expected it to. Maybe the clouds had something to do with my solar project? Or, maybe someone was teaching me a lesson about not working on the Sabbath!
So much for my mindfulness and Sabbath. Maybe the rest of the day will go better, but here I am typing a prompt, and had planned to leave my computer off today. I might as well open Facebook and post this prompt to my private group, so I won’t forget to do it tomorrow.
Can you believe, Norm had the nerve to ask me what this Sabbath appointment is that I put on our combined calendars – every Sunday with no end date? Maybe I should delete that appointment. Instead, it would be better to leave the appointment and try again next week, being more mindful of spending my time with God.