A Forced Sabbath

Sunday October 22 was Peru's national census day. What this meant was that it was forbidden for anyone to be outside of their home on this day starting at 8am until 5pm because an army of over 1 million volunteers was walking around the country filling out the census reports by hand. A country of more than 30 million people was put on hold for a day. It was forced to rest.

The idea of Sabbath in the Bible is sometimes seen as just another rule to be followed but in reality it was given as a blessing. Israel had been slaves for 400+ years in Egypt. As slaves they were not given the luxury to have the weekends off, or even one day off. So when they finally made it out of that bondage God blessed them with a Sabbath. He wanted them to rest because he knew this is what they needed. 

We all are still in need of Sabbath. For each of us it is going to look different. It doesn’t have to be on a Saturday or a Sunday. It doesn’t have to be spent at home doing nothing. It doesn’t even have to be a whole day. But having time set apart each week to do something that is refreshing and recharging for us will help us be more productive and better focused the rest of the week. 

I love the idea that the whole country of Peru was forced to rest on this day. We weren’t allowed to leave our homes so we were forced to slow down and take a break from our normal everyday activities and work. Because of this we were able to have a meal with our neighbors who usually would have been working during that time. Try giving yourself the blessing of Sabbath one time before the end of the year—chances are you need it!