Have you ever gone on a God Hunt? A God Hunt begins when you teach yourself to look for God’s hand at work in the everyday occurrences of your life. Here’s one of my personal God Hunt Sightings:
In Memphis at Second Presbyterian Church, I was asked to speak on my book Making Sunday Special, which deals with the topic of restoring a Jewish Sabbath-understanding to our Christian Sunday practice. I realized as I prepared that David and I have let this slip. As I re-read the chapters to remind myself of what I had written, and as I went over my speaking notes, which I haven’t used for several years, an intense longing for Sabbath, that 26-hour weekly ritual, which is both a metaphor of a divine romance—our love relationship with God—and a way to step out of purely secular time and into sacred time, began swelling in my soul.
Sometimes, those of us teach, forget that we teach as much to learn and put into practical activity the scriptural truths we are sharing, as to lead those who listen into biblical information that becomes transformative. I am often stunned when I “get” what any passage in the Bible means—this meaning hits me with force.
How about this passage?
“Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the LORD your God has commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your ox, your donkey, or any of your animals, nor the alien within your gates, so that your manservant and maidservant may rest, as you do. Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the LORD your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the LORD your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.” —Deuteronomy 5:12-15.
The implications of observing a Sabbath-practice as individuals and as a people of God are so profound and so deep and dense that I think I need to spend this next year revisiting the source material from which I wrote much of the book—The Jewish Catalogue, for instance; practical how-to’s for Jewish people on Jewish rituals. Our culture and especially our church culture is so anti-Sabbath-practice that there is very little accountability in the religious community that holds us to keeping the Fifth Commandment.
For now, today, I am going to spend some time before the Lord and consider how I can make the coming Sunday, and the Lord’s Day Eve that precedes it, the high point, the best 24-hour period of this week.
I want Sabbath to come to me again—and the Lord of the Sabbath—in that way that only happens if I intentionally put my schedules and my plans aside and determine to observe Sabbath the way the Lord my God has commanded me. I want to go back to the visitation of that sacred time, that holy observance again. I want to (as the Jewish writers explain) “re-soul.”
The Sabbath is
“…one of the surest means of finding peace in the war-torn realm of the soul … an idea with infinite potentiality, infinite power, infinite hope. …Through the Sabbath, Judaism has succeeded in turning its greatest teachings into a day. Out of a remote world of profound thoughts, grand dreams and fond hopes—all of which seem so distant, so intangible and so unrealizable—the Sabbath has forged a living reality which can be seen and tasted and felt once a week.” —Rabbi Samuel H. Dresner
There is so much, so much to learn.
I spy God!
Award-winning author Karen Mains has long had an interest in spiritual formation and the obedient Christian walk. She has written about the God Hunt in her book by the same name, The God Hunt: The Delightful Chase and the Wonder of Being Found. A hardback copy can be ordered from Mainstay Ministries for $10.00 plus $4.95 shipping and handling. Contact Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will be happy to autograph a copy for you.
Karen continues to write content for her Christian blog, “Thoughts-by-Karen-Mains.” In so doing, she desires to touch the lives of Christian women and men and help them find ways to walk closer with the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, through silent retreats, spiritual teaching, women’s retreats, Christian vacation opportunities, and other ministry activities, Karen helps each Christian woman and man receive vital spiritual food.
Through her Hungry Souls ministry, Karen serves as a spiritual coach to many Christian women and men, and teaches a mentor-writing class. And, through the Global Bag Project, she is working to develop a network of African women who sew exquisite cloth reusable shopping bags, Africa bags. This micro-finance women opportunity helps provide a much-needed sustainable income for struggling African families. For more information on this critically important project, please click here.
For decades, Karen and her husband, David, have served God through religious communications—radio, television, and print publication. They are the co-authors of the Kingdom Tales Trilogy: Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance, and Tales of the Restoration. To find many valuable resources for pastors and congregations at the Mainstay Ministries main website, please click here.
Likewise, pastors will find special resources to help them prepare effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.