THE SABBATH PRINCIPLE

Calvin S. Metcalf     There is a Sabbath principle in life that must be observed if we are to be healthy and productive.  It simply means that we cannot work nonstop without some time to recover our emotional and physical stamina.  We cannot endure long periods of stress without some wholesome diversion.  Our human physique has many limitations which requires periods of rest and relaxation.  God made us this way.  When He rested on the seventh day of creation, He punctuated the Sabbath principle for all His creatures.  The fact that we have night and day, sunshine and rain, summer and winter reminds us that there is a time to work and a time to rest.  This law of God is carved into the cycle of the seasons.  How well have we learned it?
     In our scientific world where nature no longer restricts our work, we tend to ignore the Sabbath principle.  We fail to listen to the alarm system within our own weary bodies and, in so doing, we bankrupt our souls before our years are spent.  Insecurity and greed have sent us on an exhausting search for that pot of gold at the end of a very demanding rainbow.  We are often overwhelmed by life’s circumstances as stress takes its toll.
     Yet, we are reluctant to find our rest in the Lord.  God gave us the Sabbath principle, not to restrict us, but to restore us. God does not wish to inhibit our days of productivity.  He wants to give our days a greater sense of fulfillment.  Anxiety and fatigue will never allow us to be at our best.  Overwork results in underachievement.  Perhaps keeping a Sabbath day holy makes all our days holy unto the Lord.
     On several occasions Jesus our Lord needed downtime and turned aside for uninterrupted moments with the Father.  His human limitations left Him exhausted from dealing with the crowd.  He taught His disciples and He is teaching us the need to stop what we are doing long enough to revive our mental, spiritual and physical energies. 
     It is a sin against our spirit and the spirit of God that lives within to destroy the house in which they dwell.  Of course we are not equipped to live forever on this earth, but we are equipped to make the most of our years.  In our mad rush to be materially secure, we must be still and know that He is God.  In knowing Him we discover His Sabbath principle of rest for our work-weary lives.  It is possible to find rest and recreation in the Lord.

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