The Practice of Sabbath


Sabbath – a day we cease from doing anything obligatory and instead focus on ceasing, resting, embracing, feasting. It is a day for delight. For sleeping in. For eating delicious meals and leaving the dishes until tomorrow. For taking long walks. For sitting in front of the fire and reading a novel. No chores. No obligations. No homework. No e-mail. No bills. Nothing at all that feels like work, nothing that seems to be oriented toward productivity or achievement.

Intimacy with God cannot be rushed; we cannot enjoy the presence of God if we are always looking at our watches.” (Calvin Miller)

The Sabbath is not to be a legalistic duty. Rather, living in accordance with our own natural rhythm gives freedom, the delight of one whole day in every seven set apart as holy.

“Sabbath observance is one of our most honest and practical indicators of authentic religious faith. The extent and depth of our Sabbath commitment is the measure of how far we have progressed in our discipleship and friendship with God.” Norman Wirzba,


Each of the spiritual rhythms can work like an antidote to some of the more poisonous aspects of our society today. They are like balm on wounds, healing even if painful at first.

Silence counteracts noise. Contemplation counteracts commodification. Sabbath can counteract the idol of the self-made man.

Good food, good wine, candlelight, lamplight (the atmosphere of Sabbath)