A Gorgeous Day

I want to tell you about I wonderful afternoon I had recently. This past Sunday, after church and then lunch at our host’s home, someone suggested we go out to play some soccer. We got everyone together and went to our host’s uncle’s house. He lives at what appeared to be a disused shop yard with a couple of large warehouse type buildings, but there was a grassy yard in the back with some goals set up. A few more cousins and friends were planning on joining us, but they were going to be about an hour later than us, so we had some time to just sit and hang out. Initially, this was pretty frustrating. We could have stayed at the house with wifi; we could have gone home to change our clothes or take a quick nap or wash some clothes, but we were sitting in a stranger’s back yard with nothing to do. As it turned out, nothing was exactly what I needed to do. We sat under a mango tree and munched on sour green mangoes with salt, which our Ecuadorian friends introduced to us. Chill music played in the background as we laughed and joked and discovered more fruit trees (pomegranate, star fruit, coconut, and oranges to be specific). Eventually the rest of the crew showed up and we played a couple games of soccer, then feasted on fresh coconut that we opened up with an old rusty machete. I spent the afternoon truly enjoying things around me, marveling in the bright red pomegranates, drinking in the scent of orange peels, relishing the warm sunshine on my skin. It was one of the best days I’ve had in a long time. I felt rested and refreshed and full of joy.

      I feel like the Lord was trying to teach me something through this day. For the past year or so since I started school, I have been very unfaithful with my sabbaths. I fall into the pattern worrying that if I don’t work Sundays I won’t get enough hours. Even on weekends when I’m not scheduled on a Sunday, my afternoon after church is dedicated to homework and chores. I never feel like there is enough time for me to rest. But when the Bible talks about taking sabbath day, it’s not a suggestion, it’s a command (see the Ten Commandments). God wants us to trust him with our time, just like a tithe is saying that we trust God enough to provide for us if we give faithfully to Him. I believe that God will multiply our time if we trust him enough to take a day off dedicated to spending time with Him. Not only this, but a sabbath is necessary for us to recharge and recenter ourselves physically, mentally, and spiritually. I know that once I get home “real life” will make this a very difficult lesson to follow. Falling back into my old routine will be the easiest thing to do, but I am realizing now how important this is.

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