Sabbath is a special day that my family looks forward to. It’s special because it’s a day that we can commune with God and celebrate His love and goodness in our lives with other people. It’s that day that we don’t have to worry about chores. Isn’t that great? Everyday except for Sabbath I have to do this and that and this and that. It’s a vicious cycle of endless chores. Yet, they’re never done. Mercy. So, I am always excited for Sabbath to come. I get to spend time with God and my family. When the pandemic wasn’t here yet, we’d be able to go for fellowship meals and spend time in nature with friends. It was such a blessing!
But now things are different.
They may be different but we don’t have to worry or be sad. There’s still many ways we can do to be able to celebrate the Sabbath even with just our own family circle.
WAYS TO CELEBRATE THE SABBATH DURING PANDEMIC
- WELCOME THE SABBATH WITH CANDLES. We like to light our scented candles on or minutes before Sabbath comes. There’s something to the sweet smell and soft light that candles bring into our home that makes Sabbath special. I especially like the smell of scented candle with a freshly vacuumed floor.
- BRING IN THE SABBATH BLESSINGS WITH LOTS OF MUSIC DURING WORSHIP TIME. My family loves to sing so on Sabbaths we would put on our favorite music on YouTube and sing with the gospel singers there or my husband would get his guitar or ukulele and would lead us in singing. Bethany likes to play her ukulele with daddy too. We would spend quite a good amount of time singing. It’s a blessing not only for our soul but also for our lungs. 😊
- CHOOSE A SPECIAL BOOK TO READ DURING WORSHIP TIME. Our family is currently reading Maranatha for morning worship and Proverbs for evening worship. On Sabbaths, we would read Sabbath Readings for the Home or Adventist Home or mission story books.
- HAVE A SABBATH MEAL TRADITION. It’s usually soup and bread for us on Friday evenings and popcorn and fruits with smoothie on Sabbath evenings. Simple and easy to make and just our favorites!
- PREPARE SABBATH CLOTHING IN ADVANCE. It’s great to know ahead of time what to wear on Sabbath. I have only a few clothes and they’re mostly black so it’s not difficult for me to decide what to wear. But I like to put our chosen clothes in a certain place where we can see them just to remind us that these are our chosen Sabbath apparel. Also, choosing at least a day before helps us to see whether we would need to iron our clothes or not. 😉 It also helps preparing shoes ahead of time. Cleaning them and making sure they’re ready is a big plus. (This applies even to those who are doing home church. Go on ahead and wear your Sabbath apparel!)
- PREPARE SABBATH MEALS AHEAD OF TIME. We like to keep our Sabbath meals simple. I would make a big batch of pancakes on Friday morning so we can just reheat them the next day. Otherwise, we’d have granola or sweet potatoes or rice with nondairy milk. There are days we’d eat leftover corn bread or soup or just eat tons of fruits and a little bit of nuts. Cereals is also a good option once in a while. Lunch is usually rice and beans or spaghetti or haystacks.
- DO BIBLE GAMES AND SABBATH ARTS AND CRAFTS WITH YOUR FAMILY. With a toddler, we have to be creative with this one. Sometimes it’s just crayons and a coloring page. I like to carry those in my purse whenever we go to church.
- SPEND TIME IN NATURE. We like to go for a Sabbath hike or drive where we can be able to just feel God’s presence and bask in His love with His other creation. We have explored hidden beauties such as a place we call Painted Hills. Bethany thoroughly enjoyed the trip.
- COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS. We praise God for technology for it allows us to contact people close to our hearts. I just pray that we’d be able to see our families and friends we’re unable to visit due to the pandemic.
- ATTEND A NEW CHURCH. Due to my husband’s adherence to God’s calling in his life, our family has been tremendously blessed for the opportunity to meet new people either in-person or via Zoom through worship. We could be in California one Sabbath and then Oregon the next Sabbath. I’ve especially enjoyed attending RISDAC—my home church for five years when I was living in Bangkok. The only concern is the time difference.
- WRITE ENCOURAGING NOTES OR LETTERS. This is something that I particularly loved doing when I was in high school and college and would like to do again with my family. In fact, we can start doing this tomorrow. We can always mail them after Sabbath. It’s always a joy receiving something in the mail that is not either a bill or a promotional material. 😉
- STUDY THE BIBLE DEEPER AND PRAY MORE. I’m sure there’s always that special topic or Bible study guide you’d like to read and study but never finds to do during the week. Sabbath is the time you can do that! This is something that my husband and I try to carve out time for. There’s something to that quiet, undisturbed, unhurried time of study and prayer!
- MAKE MUSIC WITH FAMILY/FRIENDS. When I was in Korea, my friends and I would hang out after church and just play our instruments together. We just go from one hymn to the next for hours. I miss those days! My husband and I would do this too and will probably do more because our little tot loves music and she’s able to stay put with her own instruments for a few minutes.
I know there’s still a lot of ideas out there we can do to celebrate Sabbath this pandemic season but my hands are getting cold sitting here in the RV while our baby naps. Talk to you guys again later.
If there’s anything you’d like to share about celebrating Sabbath this pandemic, please Type them in the comment section below. I’d love to hear them! Thank you and God bless! Ciao for now!