I was thinking about the term consecrated and what it means to set
Sabbath apart from the other days of the week.

When I was a little girl, I learned that my name means "consecrated to
God". The term "consecrated" was unfamiliar and hard to understand.
Even into adulthood I didn't have a full grasp of what it meant. It
wasn't until I started keeping Sabbath that I had a fuller
understanding of the meaning. To consecrate means to declare or set
something apart.

"Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has
commanded you." (Deuteronomy 5:12 NIV)

Setting something apart from the rest is not always easy. To set
Sabbath apart from the other six days can take planning, effort and
focus. If you didn't grow up keeping Sabbath, it can be even harder.

God started from the beginning. He said "it is a lasting ordinance"
(Leviticus 16:31 NIV). It was people who put less and less value on
this command until it is now viewed more as a sin to keep Sabbath than
a command from God.

I have heard a few people describe life in Israel, where Sabbath is
commonly kept. They say almost everything shuts down Friday evening.
It is a way of life and you don't have much of a choice. I'm sure
that God intended Sabbath to be along these lines- natural and easy.
Something everyone does together.

In American culture, it seems quite the opposite. You must go AGAINST
the flow. Sometimes it requires being left out, missing something you
enjoy, or being rejected by friends and family.

Thankfully, God didn't say we should only keep Sabbath when it is
convenient or when others are doing it or when ridicule is not
involved. He said:
"Blessed is the one who does this—the person who holds it fast, who
keeps the Sabbath without desecrating it, and keeps their hands from
doing any evil." (Isaiah 56:2 NIV)

Blessed! No matter how hard . . . the blessings will come. Trust
God. His design for us is better than anything anyone else could

Until next week,
Lisa G.