Summary: In this crazy time obsessed world is it time to reclaim God's gift of a Sabbath Rest?
What a crazy world that we live in. You ever feel like the Rabbit in “Alice in Wonderland”? You know the one, he’s always rushing this way and that looking at his watch and muttering, “I’m late, I’m late”. It seems that every hour of every day is filled to the limit with things that need doing and we never seem to have enough time to do it all. How often have you caught yourself wishing for more hours in the day or more days in the week so that you could finally catch up and finish everything that you are supposed to do? That wouldn’t do any good though, we all know Murphy’s law and some of us know about Newton’s law of gravity, but how many of us are familiar with Parkinson’s Law, first set forth in the middle of the last century, 1955, by C. Northcote Parkinson and it says: “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.”
And so regardless of how much time you had available you still wouldn’t have enough. And if you were granted your wish of having an extra day in each week your stress level would simply be added to, because you would have one more day to try to jam too much into. Maybe instead we should wish for shorter days with fewer days in the week to limit our crazy schedules.
Modern technology promised us that all of the new conveniences would save us time and make our lives easier, but in the workplace, computers, blackberries, and cell phones have increased the pace of our work rather then reducing it. At home dishwashers, washing machines, vacuums and microwaves have made life easier but to go back to Parkinson law, work expands to fill the time available for its completion. And so mothers’ lose the time they saved to schlepping the kids around to hockey, music and school activities. Even our kids are stressed out because so much of their time is scheduled and there is so little time to just be a kid, playing and allowing their imaginations to run wild.
It is a never ending circle that seems to escalate over time until finally, there is no more time. Henry Twells an English poet who lived in the 1800’s wrote:
When as a child I laughed and wept,
When as a youth I waxed more bold,
When I became a full-grown man,
When older still I daily grew,
Soon I shall find, in passing on,
O Christ! wilt Thou have saved me then?
And it is into this crazy rushed world that we would like to re-introduce the fourth commandment which reads Exodus 20:8-11 “Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the LORD your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you. For in six days the LORD made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. That is why the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.