Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Sabbath Keeping, Lynne Baab

Sabbath is a popular buzzword right now in most evangelical circles, thanks in no small part, to the emerging conversation. Most people are reading another book called The Rest of God, but it wasn't available in my book club when I needed to buy a few books to fulfill my obligation. Also, I wanted to read this book because I am reading so many male-authored books, that I thought a woman's voice on Sabbath would round me out a little more.

Baab's book is written from a lot of experience and in a very historical faith (postmodern) context. She keeps it real, saying that the Sabbath is not a new gimmick for those emerging kids, yet, at the same time she doesn't give as many concessions for different lives and lifestyles as I would have liked - but I still really appreciated this text.

I still wonder, however what Sabbath looks like for parents with small children? Especially for single parents with small children? Isn't a little pie-in-the-sky? I imagine Israel was able to keep it as an entire nation was keeping it - so there would be a familial context that would help each other out - but in the western world today? I'm not so sure it's a direct cut and paste...

Here's some other notes of interest:

p.65 "What activity in your life has lost its value because of overuse? What is in danger of losing its value?"

p.94 "we say, 'I got a lot done today. I justified my existence on the face of the earth.' Our joke reflects an unfortunate reality that both of us battle."

p.123 "notice"
Rob Bell once taught that the greatest teachers are those who are moving slow enough to notice....hmmmm...

Finally, a long quote(p.121/2):

In the twentieth century many Christians adopted a form of spirituality that began with knowledge. Study the Bible; learn themajor precepts of the Christian faith; say the acurate and true things about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit and the Christian life. This kind of spirituality asserts that after we have the basic truths straight, then we can begin living a life that honors God.
The sabbath works the other way around. It invites us to participate in something without totally understanding it. In fact, many faithful sabbath keepers say that only after years of observance did they begin to understand the profound lessons God was teaching them through it. Receive the gift of the sabbath over time. Embrace the sabbath without knowing everything you will learn from it."

1 comment:

Fresh Dirt said...

We just had Lynne Baab speak to our church. The parenting question came up. One of the things she said was that Sabbath, while parenting children, is a communal act of having fun and playing together. Rather than being a time of solitude, it is a time to let the rules be pushed to the side, to not be in parenting/teaching mode with your kid, and instead be crazy with them-- throwing off the need to train in order to have a moment of just being and living.