Sabbath-living

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As seen in The Link

I have had the gift of participating in two weekend retreats in the past three months led by Wayne Muller. What a true joy that time was; a time rich in deepening and connectedness to the Holy in all of life.

Wayne talks deeply about living-Sabbath. Not simply taking moments set aside, although that is needed surely. But rather, living a life in rhythm with how God created the universe. A rhythm of work and rest, of being and doing.

If you read the gospel stories, you can’t help but notice Jesus lived this rhythm. Taking time apart to allow the dust of his soul to settle so his eyes and heart were clear. You see, no one can make muddy water clear. But if left alone, it will gradually settle. So Jesus took time that allowed certain things to fall away.

When we live in Sabbath-rhythm we remember that what needs doing will never be completed in our lifetime; we remember that what needs doing can never be done alone; we remember that what needs doing doesn’t depend upon us. We cannot do everything – and in this knowing is liberation.

And I realize the uncomfortable truth, that my life does need right-sizing; that at times (well, truthfully, most of the time!) I live as if the Force that guides the universe is not enough and that I need to do more, to control more, to direct more. As if in some way my work alone will accomplish something, as if my work will bring healing that cannot occur otherwise and so I am, in some way, absolutely necessary to the ultimate healing of the Universe. When the reality is that the manner of my striving likely does as much harm as it might do good. It does as much violence to me and to others as it has any potential to helpfully-touch them. When the reality is that the Universe is alive with healing potentiality over which I have no control, no impact, and over which the manner of my striving has no effect.

The deeper reality is that the Universe needs me to live in rhythm with Its essential nature, in rhythm to my essential nature. That is all it needs from me – to live in such a way that I embody Sabbath-living, for that is the rhythm of the Holy found throughout the depth and across the breadth of the Universe. And when I live in concert with this rhythm, I offer wholeness for one fractured piece, me, and I offer a vessel for God’s Presence to appear. And is that not, after all, why I am here – to embody God’s Presence as fully as I am able, to be Love?

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