A Mother’s Calling – Keeping the Sabbath Holy

My heart is tugging at me to start this post. As a mother, many of us struggle with guiding our home, training our children, teaching our children compassion and diligence, cleaning and cooking, and the MANY other duties that follow a mother. Our calling as a mother is one of the most critical jobs we will have in this world. It seems like I am always looking for more information on how to do a better job, a better definition of what my role as a mother should be, and I turn often times to many blogs for guidance. Its HELPFUL for me to see how you are training your children to PRAY, or teaching your children about SIN and GRACE.

The direction provided us in I Timothy 5:14 is “that younger women should marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to  speak reproachfully.”

There is a lot here. Guiding the house alone is a full time job, especially when young children are around. My thought was that since I was always looking for direction in certain areas, I would share what I find on a topic, and hopefully you will feel led to share and post your own thoughts. In trying to figure out the best way to be sure all the same topics are linked, I figured a meme would work best.

So dig in, sit down, and pray. I hope that we can benefit each other with a few words.

For this week I was hoping to address the sabbath day. I just finished reading H. Clay Trumbull’s book Hints on Child Training, which I highly recommend, and an entire chapter is devoted to training a child to sabbath observance. His main point in this chapter is that we need to teach children that the Sabbath day is not only holy, but also teach them a love for the Sabbath day. One of the ten commandments, and often one I commonly forget or fail to consider is “Remember the Sabbath Day and Keep it Holy.”  But how do you teach or train your child that the sabbath day is holy and a joyous occasion.

So my question for this post is: Do you have traditions or family activities that you reserve for the Sabbath as a way to excite your children about the day and encourage a love of the Sabbath?

Our Sabbath observance so far has been to go to church in the morning and at night if its offered. That’s as far as we have gotten as a family. And while it is a wonderful start, I’m realizing I would love to have other family traditions for the Sabbath.

So I did a little research and was surprised at how little I found. One family I read about serves cinnamon buns every Sunday morning as a way to bring joy to the home — since we aren’t eating grains, this won’t be happening. Another family spends the day with extended family — our family lives 10 hours away.  Then I thought maybe we could rest and nap together and let the children cuddle with us — but if I nap then I can’t sleep at night.

So I did a little more digging. I listened to four sermons on the Sabbath day. I heard multiple times that we shouldn’t work on the Sabbath, that we shouldn’t go out to eat on the Sabbath because it caused others to work…but I never heard much direction on what we should do.

And finally I ran across a post that suggested having a family meal together, letting each child light a candle at the table, and having the father bless each child individually. This I thought was a little closer to what I had in mind – except my one- and two-year-olds will not be lighting candles, but they each could have a candle that represents their light to the world. This would give us a perfect time to talk about being a light unto the world, and could easily lead to lessons on service, compassion and so much more.

I would like to teach my children to think beyond themselves and their next meal. With this in mind, my other thought was that Sunday might be a good day to focus on ways we can serve others. Jesus certainly fullfilled jobs of service on the Sabbath. Maybe we could make a batch of cookies for someone that needs encouragement, maybe we could make a pillowcase dress and a card for an orphan in Haiti, maybe we could collect some canned food for the Christian homeless shelter in town, or maybe we could make a simple card to send grandma.

I’m not sure yet what traditions we may decided to forge ahead with. What I do know is that Sunday has always been my favorite day. I’m not sure why. It was a day of rest in our home — no chore list from mom on that day. No school. Just church and God, and that seemed to be enough. Maybe the Sabbath needs to be simple and restful. Maybe too many traditions would clutter the day and afford us no time to listen to God. Maybe.

What do you think? Are you doing things to help your children LOVE the sabbath? Are you keeping the the day holy?

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3 thoughts on “A Mother’s Calling – Keeping the Sabbath Holy

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