Saturday, July 7, 2012

Closing the door, making the Sabbath a day of rest

I have always loved Sundays. The way I would wake up to find grandma sitting in her rocking chair, studying her scriptures instead of watching the news, dressed in her nicest - and curlers in her hair. We'd have our breakfast in quiet, unless she had her Sunday country on the sterio. :) Either way, it was calm and peaceful and a wonderful way for one to prepare one's mind for spiritual matters.

Getting to the church and finding "our" pew, right under the vent and a little forward of the clock in the large chapel, lighted by thin windows that reached to the top of the cathedral-like ceiling as well as by rows of low-hanging chandeliers was another cue to my young mind that matters of great importance were to be presented to any who came prepared to take the jeweled messages in.

Rich organ prelude invited and hushed the congregation.

It was a time marked and set aside.

Then I grew up and got married.

And then I had children. ;)

My Sundays became harried. Preparation for the Sabbath seemed entirely out of reach, no matter how many baths I had my children get in the day before.

Last minute blow-outs, 20 pound diaper backpacks, and a knowledge that I'd probably be walking halls once I finally got to church was my new norm.

I found that with one child I averaged about 1/2 an hour late. With two children, it doubled to an hour. When we discovered we would be blessed with a third, well, lets just say I "girded up my loins". Not knowing how late I'd be with this one, I remember the morning I started getting everyone ready with an arrival time in my head that was a full 4 hours before we had to be there.

What I'm really trying to get to, is that I've struggled ever since then to reclaim the day of rest I know Sunday is supposed to be.

And I think we've made some progress.

First off; alot, I found, had to do with my way of thinking.

Ie. I may not be able to rest from changing diapers or cooking dinner, but what can I rest from? Laundry? Sweeping and mopping? Kids' homework?

Second; What Sunday appropriate activities can I fill my time with that I don't usually get to do? These are things I enjoy, things that give back,  like service, writing thank you cards, making a treat to share with someone, going on a car ride, making a craft or playing a game with the kids, going on a walk...all the things I wish I could get to during a busy week that really do build bonds of love in a family.

Between these two-and, I won't lie, my kids getting older and more self-sufficient (I have a 10, 8, 5, and 2 year old), over time and with much trial and error, I have learned to close the door on weekday projects. I have come to recognize that even if my Sunday is busy, it is busy with all the things that I love most. It is truly becoming a rest from my labors.

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