The past few weeks, I've been pondering on the whole concept of sabbath.
This is not a new idea to me, I was raised in a home that took Sundays seriously and we always rested (honestly, I remember getting bored as a kid).
It's a practice, a rhythm, a principle I've maintained with varying degrees throughout my adult life.
Lately I have found my podcast app unintentionally flooded with random episodes on sabbath and rest.
Ultimately (and most importantly), sabbath is God's idea. It is His plan. He created it from the very beginning of time.
If the God of all creation took a rest from His work after six days, that's a pretty big clue that we puny humans need to take sabbath seriously. It's bordering on arrogant or absurd to think we could function well otherwise.
I know what it is to run myself into the ground. I know what it is to not truly take time each week for rest, worship, and refueling.
I also know how easy it can be to have a "sabbath" consist of 90% Netflix, Hulu, and Words with Friends.
I am in no way bashing TV show binging or iPhone gaming. I love a Gilmore Girls marathon as much as the next girl and there's something weirdly fulfilling about beating your husband in another round of Words with Friends.
But recently I am discovering that excessive doses of vegging out on the living room sofa with the Apple TV remote does little for my health or sanity. It is not (always) truly resting.
Five months of a challenging pregnancy have given me more "down" time than I've had in years. What I've learned is that, while TV shows can provide the beautiful gift of distraction from pain, they ultimately can increase my levels of anxiety and restlessness.
Restless = the opposite of restful.
These days you'll find me reaching for a book to read, my journal to scribble in, or my MacBook to plunk out words in blog post drafts (not nearly all of them get posted).
You'll find podcasts and the audio Bible playing in my wireless air pods instead of Netflix running in the background, while I clean the house, make dinner, or do my makeup.
You'll hear me ask my hubby to play some competitive rounds of Bananagrams or Farkle.
You'll catch me on a quick fifteen minute walk instead of scrolling Instagram.
Don't get me wrong. There is still plenty of Facebook marketplace searching and Instagram story watching and The Office streaming with the hubs.
There is still more screen time than is probably healthy.
But I'll take progress over perfection and I'll keep pushing forward.
When weeks are extra super crazy rough, like this past one has been, it's even more crucial to use the sabbath as a time to truly find refreshment.
Today it meant waking up way too early (oh, pregnancy) and laughing hysterically at the most random things while we lounged in bed with morning breath and matted hair.
It meant ducking out of church right after the service and slipping back into our comfies and nibbling on huge pieces of banana coffeecake, while sharing an episode of Fixer Upper.
it meant 20 minutes in the kitchen whipping up a creamy chicken enchilada recipe that I found on the internet and laughing until I spit food out of my mouth when all they tasted like was warm sour cream (which hubs hates) dumped over some tortillas.
It meant four rounds of loud and intense Bananagrams, while we sipped on our lemon waters (I'm the reigning champion, for the record).
It meant watching the pilot episode of a show I've never seen, while hubs was off at his weekly ultimate frisbee game, and then realizing I was super not into Hulu right now and opening my laptop to write instead.
Later this evening we'll have BLT sandwiches (BLTC to be technical, because you have to add cheese...in fact, mine will be BLTCA because I just remembered I have ripe avocados. Yesssssss.)
We've faced some hard things this week. They have hit on many sides, in many areas of life, and left me weak, wounded, and weary. I have not felt so beaten down in a very long time.
But after hours of discussion & time in prayer last night and a beautifully restful Sunday today, my heart is a little less heavy. The problems are not fixed or gone but the simple act of taking a sabbath from it all has left me with a little more peace and a day filled with laughter instead of the tears from the past several days
And I'm reminded yet again that God's principles & practices are always for our best.
And how silly it is to think or act otherwise.