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The S Word

Last week I was listening to a doctor speak to the UNC SOM group during lunch. It was a powerful testimony of faithfulness, discerning God’s will and trusting God even when life takes some odd turns. I was greatly encouraged by her story

The most powerful part of her testimony came when she dropped the “S” word. There was a palatable shock, a heaviness in the air. How could she say this? Is it appropriate in a med school to say this word? It is so offensive to our busy selves, our important selves, our accomplishing selves.

But she said it. She said “Sabbath”. Although there are seasons where this is extremely difficult, we should all be obedient to the Lord’s command to take a Sabbath. It is a command that is a blessing. God is telling us to stop, to rest, to worship. But in a room full of busy students preparing for a busy lifestyle, it was a shocker.

But isn’t busyness the lifestyle of the Doctor? Doesn’t the system require it? Maybe, but the world is not our standard for life, scripture is. We don’t have to be legalistic, but we do have to be obedient. The sabbath is important, as important as worshipping God, as being honest, as preserving life.

The sabbath does many things for us. It reminds us that life goes on without us and that we are not God. We remember that God created everything, and then rested and enjoyed it all, and so should we. It prohibits us from overworking others, from using them, from exploiting them. The sabbath gives us necessary physical, emotional and spiritual rest. It acknowledges that God is sovereign and we are not.

If you do not have the time for a sabbath, then you are doing some things you should not be. Everything God calls you to do leaves room for a sabbath. Again, there are seasons when it is beyond our control, but do not let it become a lifestyle. You are not that important.

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