January 28, Saturday

joanna2The AMI QT Devotionals for January 28-29 are provided by Joanna Tzen.  Joanna graduated from U. Penn and currently works in Philadelphia.  She married Paul in 2014, and they attend Grace Covenant Church.

P. Ryun’s series will continue on Monday.

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHT FOR TODAY

Exodus 31:12-3

Then the Lord said to Moses, 13 “Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.

29I’ve been reading a book titled Emotionally Healthy Leader, where the author interestingly brings up the topic of the Sabbath. So what exactly is a Sabbath? Is it an Old Testament practice that we no longer observe as Christians?

In the Bible, observing the Sabbath is one of the commandments that were given to the Israelites through Moses. They practiced the Sabbath not only because even God rested on the seventh day from the work of creation, but because this observance showed the surrounding peoples that the Israelites trusted God. They would not farm or work on this day; they would rest in God and trust Him.

As time passed, Sabbath had become obligatory restrictions that man added on to; so by Jesus’ time, the teachers confronted Jesus and His disciples for gleaning grain on the Sabbath. That is when Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath” (Mark 2:27-28).

This passage might come to mind for many Christians when they hear the word Sabbath. Why should we as Christians practice it? Isn’t it legalistic? If the purpose is to set aside time to know that God is holy and to worship Him, as well as to recognize our own limits, perhaps it is worth thinking about in our world. As we are constantly bombarded with the lie that we are what we do, I think this practice helps us to ask some hard questions: Are we defining ourselves by our productivity, regardless of whether that work is at church, school or the workplace? What keeps us from resting in God? Are we unconsciously trying to earn God’s salvation?

Prayer: Lord, examine my heart and show me if I have believed the lie that I am what I do. Could it be that I am unable to rest because I am afraid of what I will find within when I am not producing? If I have believed this lie, please forgive me of this and replace it with the truth that I am a beloved child of God, and that what I do does not define me. Help me to rest in the security of Your promises, rejoicing in the salvation You have already secured for me. Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Judges 5-6

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