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Marriage Spirituality, Discipline Of Sabbath..

Dear Married brothers and sisters in Christ,

I am encouraged that you and your spouse have taken the time to pray together and communicate after reading the last forums on Marriage Spirituality. These are areas that will nourish your relationship.

Your marriage and family are the foundation of your Christian Walk that will have an impact on others that you fellowship with and witness to who are unsaved.

God also wants you and your spouse to have that recreational time to refresh your marriage. In your devotional time with your spouse discuss it: Are you a fun person to be with? What do you and your spouse do for fun? Take a moment and reflect the early years of your relationship.

What is a Sabbath?

Genesis 2:2-3, By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all His work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested from all the work of creating that He had done.

Exodus 20:8-11, Observe the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Work six days and do everything you need to do. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to God your God. Don't do any work-not you, not your son, nor your daughter, nor your servant, nor your maid, nor your animals, not even the foreign guest visiting in your town. For in six days God made Heaven, Earth, and sea, and everything in them; He rested on the seventh day. Therefore, God blessed the Sabbath day; He set it apart as a holy day.

The historical and literary context of these scriptures refers to the time, customs, and culture of God's people, but the clear meaning of the Sabbath is the point we are focused on.

1. In the here and now times the Sabbath is intended to be the leisured but intentional experience of reflection on and celebration of the source and goal of our life on earth.

2. Sabbath is designed to be recreational day.

3. Sabbath challenges the myth of quality time.

Suggestions for when you folks apply the Sabbath

1. Discuss topics for planning a Sabbath.

2. Make time for recreation.

3. Practice Meditation Celebration:

Take a "mental walk" before you rise from bed.

Think of things to do with your spouse while preparing for the day.

Spend a moment of quiet before talking to anyone.

Discuss your plans with your spouse over breakfast.

At work, use "coffee breaks" to dream up plans with your spouse.

Take a moment to joke with your spouse each day.

At the end of the day, take a break with your spouse.

Go to bed early enough to be rested for your planned Sabbath day.

My wife Hazel and I have excercised some of the examples that match the personality of our marriage but not all work. For example, see the suggestion about taking a "mental walk" before you rise from bed? I enjoy analytical discussions. Its a reflection of what we used to do, what we enjoyed most, and lets go out and do it again! lol! She looked at me one beautiful Saturday morning and said point blank, "What?" It was 730am and she wanted to roll over and go back to sleep. lol!

We do enjoy planning the day in San Francisco. I pack my napsack with bottled water, an extra sweater, and at 900am, take the public subway- BART, We get off in the center of town in front of the cable cars, and walk throughout the city, China town, through Fisherman's Wharf, stop for lunch, see the bay, Alcatraz, and then get home about 700pm. Or, we will drive to the mountains, to the beach in Daly City/Pacifica, the hiking trails.

This is our marital Sabbath. Hazel and I do have our struggles from the past, and need to work on some issues today. But our Sabbaths are a time when we can forget and refresh our marriage. And we are blessed at how one day with our Father God, and with each other, reflecting on the beauty of His creation outdoors can make a difference in our marriage. Hazel and I enjoy meeting and speaking with people outdoors, so witnessing to complete strangers comes natural for both of us, Praise His wonderful name! At the same time we are getting the spiritual refuel and perspective of why we chose to marry each other almost 20 years ago.

I hope our testimony will help you and your spouse. It was awkward for us to discuss this because Hazel is not in the habit of discussing things like this with me and I want to be the narrator. It is hard to master this but through prayer, God helped us break the ice with each other, slowly. And its working.

Please share your ideas and it may be an encouragement to others here at Talk Jesus.

Your servant in Christ Jesus.
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Bob, I have to say this article truely made me think. Don't remember the last time me and my husband even had fun maybe a Sabbath Day is what we need a time to talk and refresh or marriage and maybe even talk about the future. Thanks for the post.