Thursday, March 22, 2012

'Closed' to be Open

When I was a kid most stores were closed Sundays.

Until 7-11's came along. In their wake we, as consumers, learned that we had a safety net in case we forgot milk, eggs, or bread. The safety net caused our diligence to dull. One thing led to another and here we are, a plethora of open stores available every single day - and night - opportunities for shopping 'round the clock, which on its face doesn't seem like a bad thing, until we realize we traded rest for convenience.

Lately, nostalgia has crept into my soul. Sunday used to be a special day, and not just because my family and I are church participators. No, the whole country observed the notion of rest. As a child I didn't appreciate the cessation, the interruption of life's busyness. Today, I feel the loss.

Pleased to find this Sabbath Manifesto whose goal is to encourage us to slow down in an increasingly hectic world. I've printed up their Ten Principles for later perusal. I've taken The Pledge.  From sunset Friday, March 23, to sunset Saturday, March 24, I intend to unplug, to allow my soul the space to calmly realize who I am and what I need and want, to allow my mind a breather from the constant input of this technological age, and to allow my heart the opportunity to give wherever there may be need which I can meet.

We'll see how it goes.

For me, unplugging means the cell phone - which I only turn on when I'm away from home in case the kids or husband need to contact me - stays off. The computer can get along without me for a day. The television - and Netflix (that will be the hard one) can save electricity by remaining off for me. (It may be difficult if others in the household find my Pledge uncompelling, but this house has many rooms.) Avoiding commerce, easy. Getting outside, lighting candles, eating bread, yes! Connecting with loved ones shall mean more than asking them to 'throw another log on the fire'. No, it will be a pleasure to listen, share, seek mutual understanding, perhaps invite some friends over. Drink wine? Probably not. The effects of alcoholism in the lives of loved ones has slashed too much of my heart lately so this is best avoided for now. But a nice Draper Valley Juice would add much. Nurturing my health sounds like bliss - a brisk walk, eating real food, a warm bath, a clean bed, meditation in a dimly lit room. Giving back, yes. I eagerly look for God's guidance in this. Finding silence, not easy in a house full of adult children, a hyperactive husband, and a beagle. But I shall find it nonetheless, perhaps in the quiet morning hours while sleep restores bodies, or on a solitary walk.

This Challenge takes place on Saturday, and I will engage thusly. Sunday, however, is the day I intend to rescue from then on out. Sunday, a day of rest. A day to remember the resurrected Savior, to remember me, to remember you, and to remember the relationship which gently cradles the three.

'Closed' seems negative. 'Open' positive. However, in this case closed means freedom to be open. And I am eager for it!