As a church, we will not have a service on Sunday, December 29th.
For those of you who have been a part of our Freedom Family, this post is to refresh your memory.
For those who are new to the Freedom Family, this is my opportunity to communicate to you why we choose to do this.
It’s not just because we want to have a Sunday off. It’s to give you and your family a day of rest.
One of the things we want to do is to LEARN TO REST WELL. I’m not so sure as believers that we rest well. My encouragement is to be intentional on Sunday, December 29th to stop and rest.
Chick-fil-A is closed on Sunday for one reason and one reason only: to give their employees a day of rest and worship. Sunday is the highest producing day for fast food restaurants. You would think that it is not a wise business decision.
The average revenue for a restaurant in a year is 1 million dollars. The average revenue in a year for Chick-fil-A is 5 million dollars. They do five times more in six days than others do in seven days.
It’s important to understand the purpose for not having church on Sunday. It’s a day that we encourage you to have a BIBLICAL SABBATH!
I recently read a book that was about the Sabbath. It made a distinction between a secular Sabbath which consists of physical rest and a Biblical Sabbath.
It gave four elements of a Biblical Sabbath. I’m going to tweak these down to three elements. I hope this will help us because I’m not sure as believers we know how to rest well.
STOP AND BE STILL
In today’s society we are dictated to by our schedules: work schedules, school schedules, kid’s activity schedules, work around the house schedules, church schedules and especially this time of the year, our Christmas schedules.
Today we are freeing you up from your church schedule. The worship team and sound team don’t have to be here at 8 am for a 10 am service. The Freedom Kids teachers don’t have to teach. The greeters and parking lot attendees don’t have to be here. Linda doesn’t have to be here to get the coffee ready. And everybody else doesn’t have to get up, have breakfast, get dressed in your Sunday best and rush to church by 10 am.
What we want to do is to give you a Sunday to decompress from rushing around with your busy schedule during the Christmas season.
Honestly, there is so much in my heart right now that I want to communicate before the year 2020 begins that I could use another Sunday.
My encouragement is please don’t fill your schedule with something else.
I believe this is what we see God doing in the book of Genesis. God sets out creating the earth and on day three it says that He saw that it was good. Then He created some more and on day four He saw that it was good. And after He finished creating everything He looked and saw that it was VERY good! God was delighting!
Delighting is a part of a Biblical Sabbath.
The other night after Lisa had gone to bed, I went into our living room, sat in a chair (to be still) and began to observe the beauty of our Christmas tree. I love sitting in a dark room with the Christmas lights on and the cats tucked away in the playroom for the night. It is soothing to my soul. I was delighting.
I became overwhelmed at that moment realizing that on Black Friday my life could have ended due to an accident I experienced. My truck was totaled and somehow I came out with only a few scratches on my hand.
My breath was taken away as the thought ran through my mind that Lisa could have been living in this house all alone … indefinitely. At that moment I was overwhelmed with God’s mercy to me, my family and our church.
Instead of filling your schedule with something else, would you take at least 15 minutes and delight in the things God has done and provided for you?
GO FROM DELIGHTING TO CONTEMPLATION
Contemplation is the final and key element of a Biblical Sabbath. Thinking about the love of God. As we have been sharing on Sundays, loving God is not something you can do within yourself. Loving God with all your heart is something supernatural God does in you.
Deuteronomy 30:6 (NASB)
6 “Moreover the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, so that you may live.
Cry out to God and ask God to increase your love for Him in a greater way in 2020! Cry out to God and implore him to change your heart not your behavior. Lean into God by spending some time in worship.
Spend some time rereading the Book of Mark. My hope is you will see some things you didn’t see before or realize what God has done as we have gone through this journey together through The Book of Mark in 2019.
STOP | DELIGHT | CONTEMPLATE
These are key elements to a Biblical Sabbath.
I implore you to please don’t fill your schedule with something else from 10 am – 11:15 am. Be intentional about using this part of Sunday as a Biblical Sabbath.
At 11:16 you are more than welcome to go back to your busy schedules.
My hope is this will give us a framework to develop a daily discipline of a Biblical Sabbath. All it takes is 10 minutes a day.
By the way… as you drive around don’t be in such a rush. Life is too short to be in such a hurry!