Us northerners do look forward to our summers. In three short months we pack a years worth of visiting, celebrations, camping, fishing, cookouts, softball, t-ball, swimming lessons and assorted activities, deemed unsuitable for the other months of a Minnesota year. We look forward to moments of rest and relaxation . . . time to be re-created within. We need these moments. We were not created to work nonstop. Early in our relationship with God, we learned that Sabbath – one day in seven set aside for God was essential, not only to worship and honor God, but for ourselves.
The season of Retirement has become a season of Sabbath for me. I’ve found myself being drawn back, more fully into my relationship with God. I’ve known others who have found that Sabbath time in an illness or in recovery from surgery . . . moments when space and time allow for one to turn our hearts and to tune our spirits to God’s presence.
The rhythm’s of life demand that we pull back, take stock of our lives before we race to the next place. In a world where the noise of social media, text messages, cell phones and e-mails break into our silence, we need place and time set aside to commune with our creator. We are most whole when we are in touch and touched by God. In our quiet moments, we make room for God to speak to our hearts and feed our souls. The still small voice of God is most clear, when we let go of the noise and make time for God.
One of my favorite new hymns of the church is based on Psalm 42:1. Martin Nystrom’s “As the deer” captures my soul’s need for being in relationship with God. With the words . . “As the deer pants for the water, so my soul longs after you . . . You alone are my strength, my shield . . . you alone are my heart’s desire and I long to worship you.”