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For Discussion in Small Groups
How did it go this last week practicing silence and solitude? What did you learn?
Sabbath is a 24 hour period where you stop in order to fill your day with rest (from paid and unpaid work) and worship (feast on God and on what you delight in).
- Have you ever practiced sabbath before? If yes - share your experience with the sabbath, if not - explain why not.
Read Deuteronomy 5:12-15
- God called the Israelites to remember how He saved them from slavery in Egypt where their entire worth and identity was based off of their work and accomplishments.
“Sabbath is resistance. It is counter culture. Our culture says we are defined by what we do, not by who you are. Sabbath says when you are not working you are still God’s beloved son or daughter… When I have a sense of God’s pleasure and love and presence on Sabbath and it has nothing to do with my work, it is profound. This is a gift, not associated with our work. This in of itself is a gift - to separate my relationship with God, my being with God, with my doing for God.” - Peter Scazzero, Emotionally Healthy Leader
- How can you be tempted into building your identity and your worth off what you do (your work and accomplishments), instead of based on who you are before God?
- How has this part of you created tension in your priorities between work and your family, or your responsibilities and your walk with God?
Read Isaiah 58:13:14
“The Sabbath is an invitation to enter delight. The Sabbath, when experienced as God intended, is the best day of our lives. Without question or thought, it is the best day of the week. It is the day we anticipate on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday—and the day we remember on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. Sabbath is the holy time where we feast, play, dance, have sex, sing, pray, laugh, tell stories, read, paint, walk, and watch creation in its fullness. Few people are willing to enter the Sabbath and sanctify it, to make it holy, because a full day of delight and joy is more than most people can bear in a lifetime, let alone a week.” - Dan Allender, Sabbath
- If you practiced sabbath for just 6 hours this next week - what would you fill it with that you delight and take abundant joy in?
- How often do you make time for these God given passions in your life? Why or why not?
- Have a discussion about broadening our idea of worship and spiritual disciplines to include these things that you delight in.
- How can a dinner with family/best friends, or basketball with friends be a form of worship?
- What hesitations and/or confidence do you have in broadening our idea of worship and spiritual disciplines in this way?
Practice for the Week
- Plan a day and time frame in the next week to practice sabbath. If you have never practiced sabbath before feel free to start with 4, 6, or 12 hours before jumping to 24 hours.
- Intentionally Prepare
- Make an I Will (delight in) & an I Won’t (work) list