The Ten Commandments, or “Ten Words,” are given by God to a people coming out of generations of slavery into a new life of freedom. The first few commandments talk about our connection to God – to whom we truly belong, and the last few talk about our connection to other people with whom we share this life. But right in the middle of these valuable guidelines is this long and very detailed “hinge” command about keeping the Sabbath.
What is this doing there?
Why is this so essential that it would make it into God’s top ten instructions for life?
And what could it possibly say to us today?
We are all God’s beloved children, and we are all made in God’s image– each one different, each one with specific things that fill us with joy and satisfaction and express our true self and God’s unique delight in us.
When we stop doing and allow ourselves the space to be, things slow down and we notice. And we can see, sometimes in tiny, ordinary and surprising ways, God’s pervasive presence in the world and our own place within it. And our capacity to praise our creator, and to delight in life, grows deeper.
Observing the Sabbath reconnects with who we are, and celebrates who God made us to be. Resting on purpose makes us human again.
*I think Walter Brueggemann said this somewhere, but if so, I can no longer find the citation. But props anyway - check out his awesome book, Sabbath as Resistance: Saying No to the Culture of Now.