From the Pastor…
Over the past several months, the church staff and the Bible Study at Pitman Manor have worked through Dr. Walter Brueggemann’s book entitled, “Sabbath as Resistance: Saying NO to the CULTURE OF NOW.” I have enjoyed wrestling with our current understanding of what Sabbath is and what Sabbath is not. Sabbath is not legalist rules, moralistic codes, blue laws or life-denying practices according to the professor. Sabbath keeping is “a way of making a statement of peculiar identity amid a larger public identity, of maintaining and enacting a counter-identity that refuses ‘mainstream’ identity, which itself entails anti-human practice and the worship of anti-human gods.” In other words, the call is to put our relationship with God first! Sabbath keeping should be about Christ and Christ’s ministry as the priority in our lives and part of that priority is to worship and rest. The priority is taking on the mantle of our Savior:
28 “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)
Dr. Brueggemann wants to remind us that God rested and so should we. Sabbath worship and renewal reminds us of the idols that we take for granted in contemporary society. It helps us see the anxiety, acquisitiveness and competitiveness with which we often live and it calls us to embrace a different way – the way of Sabbath. “Sabbath is taking time…time to be holy…time to be human.”
I hope that you will take seriously God’s call to rest – that includes both worship with the family of God and activities that renew our souls.