This year, I started a new spiritual practice where each Sunday, I fast from technology, or at the very least from social media.
It was something that I felt prompted and inspired to do, but was resistant to, I'll admit. I had all the excuses. I run a business online, I need to answer messages and emails, I'm just keeping up with family, I need to post those photos from Saturday for my chatbooks, it's not that big of a deal and it's surly not NOT observing the sabbath.
But I had a desire to strengthen my relationship with God and myself and the people around me, and as I prayed to know HOW to do that, I began to wonder about this seventh day and why I observed the Sabbath.
I was raised a certain way, to have certain family traditions, religious traditions, expectations, and even rules to follow. I have observed the sabbath as a holy day the majority of my life as a day set apart from the rest of the week abstaining from work, shopping, outdoor activities-- essentially, the Sabbath was a day of rest that looked different from Mon-Sat.
It was a boring day as a kid.
And as a mom, it was a stressful day with bored and restless kids.
And at the beginning of the year I just had a sincere desire to know why this day was His day and what I was doing wrong that when Monday came I felt anything BUT rested and rejuvenated but instead wrung out and on edge.
I don't have all the answers, but I can tell you that the small prompting to turn off the world on this one day, has changed my Sundays 180 degrees.The three things I desired out of my Sabbath:
- To connect with God, myself, and others deeper and more fully present.
- To experience rest & rejuvenation
- To truly worship.
By fasting from technology/social media I have experienced:
- More SPACE, brain space, heart space, and actual physical TIME to connect with God by studying my scriptures, spending time in nature (aka out on the back porch), & in prayer and/or meditation.
- SILENCE. I am able to HEAR what I'm thinking and feeling without the constant buzz of entertainment or information! It's incredible, restful, and life giving. I can fine tune the rest of my week, I clean up my thoughts, feelings, and emotions. I'm also able to HEAR and SEE my people with unfiltered ears and eyes. I feel that when I'm regularly online/on social media, I hear and see these people I love through a little bit of a filter-- the semi distracted filter, or the comparison filter, or who knows what else, I just know that when I observe this fast from technology and/or social media, I truly SEE and HEAR them, and it's rejuvenating and beautiful. (and magically my once bored and restless children are not so bored or restless. They get the full me, and that has been one of the biggest gifts of all. I am humbled each Sunday to be a mother!)
- WORSHIP. Once I really woke up on the Sabbath with intention to consecrate it to the Lord, I found myself truly worshipping on His day. I wasn't attending church meetings just to show my face. I was singing hymns with a prayerful heart, I was renewing promises with my Father and reflecting on my week with a new heart, I was recommitted and filled with gratitude for His unwavering love and life. I moved through this seventh day with purpose.
It's turned out that the Lord gave us this day as a gift, and perhaps He knew that in the world that we live in today we would need Sabbath more than ever. We need this day of rest. This day of worship. This day of gratitude and human connection. We need this day of song, of prayer, of study. We need this day of quiet, stillness, and the chance to recommit.
I want to encourage you to stand still on this seventh day, and turn it over to Him in the smallest ways, and stand back and watch the biggest miracles unfold for you from the inside, out.
God is good.
Come onto Him, and you will find rest.
With him you can walk and not be weary, run and not faint.
His yoke is easy, His burden is light.
You are His child.
You are loved.