Monday, June 18, 2007

Sabbath Musings

On Saturday I had the wonderful opportunity to hear Lauren Winner speak at the seminary. Lauren Winner, for those of you who might not be familiar with her work, is the author of several excellent books including Girl Meets God (her spiritual autobiography) and Mudhouse Sabbath. That second is a slim volume of reflections on various spiritual practices/disciplines (including Sabbath-keeping) and how Winner's roots in Judaism enhance and enrich her understanding of how to embody and live these practices.

The all-day seminar (thank you, Dana! what a wonderful gift!) explored the topic of Sabbath: a Biblical understanding of what Sabbath is (and isn't). We read, drew, prayed and discussed for several hours, wrestling with what Sabbath keeping could creatively look like for Christians in our culture today.

There was so much food for thought packed into those hours. I know this is a topic my exhausted and stressed out little self needs desperately to come back to. It's not just a matter of balancing work and rest (though that's important) but learning how to live in/dwell in God's rest, the rest into which He invites us. I want to think and pray more about this.

So from time to time, you may see what I'll call "Sabbath Musings" pop up here in my blog.

One of the first things we talked about, and an insight I'm still pondering, is how in our culture we have tried to commodify time. Have you ever considered how much of our language concerning time is taken directly from the worlds of business, finance, economics? We SPEND time. We MANAGE time. We INVEST time. We KILL time. We WASTE time.

Lauren suggested that perhaps a better, healthier (more truthful?) way to think about time is to discuss how we INHABIT it, DWELL in it, LIVE in it, and ORDER it. That last becomes especially important in a culture in which our sense of time is broken and disordered.

Again, much food for thought. I'm sure I will be reading through my notes and jotting more thoughts here in the coming weeks.

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