by Associate Judy Miske
I used to think that keeping holy the Sabbath Day was one of those rules dating back to Moses and the Old Testament, where there were many rules to be observed. I have since been enlightened on other ways to look at what Sabbath keeping means.
Some time back, Sister Brenda Rose shared notes from a retreat she presented at the Church of St. Patrick in 2016 in Inver Grove Heights, MN. She called the retreat “Sabbath Keeping: Silencing our Lives.”
There were several positive reasons she offers to make Sabbath keeping a daily way of life. Viewing “Sabbath Time” with this mindset means a lot to me and has enhanced and enriched my spiritual life.
- I can relax in unexpected moments of free time and just be.
- I can regularly set aside time each day for prayer and contemplation.
- I accept God’s gift of time for renewal.
- I enjoy a sense of freedom in my life and a sense of being in God’s creation.
I have often in the past filled my days with distractions like radio, TV, Internet, and my phone. When I began to honor silence in my Sabbath day, I became more at ease with listening to the inner voice of the Holy Spirit. I believe the Holy Spirit can work in many other ways. One special way for me is through friends and their suggestions. For example, a friend of mine who worked with me in Pastoral Care at a parish in St. Paul, MN believes that poetry can lead to meditation. He introduced me to a simple form of poetry called Cinquain. (the five-line pattern of syllables followed this format 2-4-6-8-2.) Experimenting with a few ideas of topics dear to me, led me to write this poem about Sabbath.
(4) God’s gift of time
(6) Sacred moments given
(8) Centering prayer silence chosen
Discovering special “Sabbath places” in my life has helped me accept the graces of each day like it was my Sabbath Day!