I was at a water park with my family when our daughter – about 5-years old at the time – snuck off without us noticing. Upon realizing that we were separated, I scanned a huge crowd of hundreds in my immediate area, feeling a wave of panic and of deep concern. How will I ever find her in this sea of people?
As it turns out we found her quickly, and here is how. Rather than organizing a park-wide search and rescue, or having her name broadcast over the park sound system, I paused and asked myself a simple question: If I were Calleigh, where would I go?
I immediately thought of this one spot in the concrete waterpark that had a small, sandy stream where water gathered in shallow pools. My daughter was one of those kids who loved the texture and the mess of sand. I had witnessed it countless times before while at the beach with her. Being covered in sand would drive me insane, but she was not bothered by it at all. In fact, she appeared to enjoy it!
Keep this story in mind as I tell you this: We are each called (and created to) seek God. But are you aware that, God, too, is a seeker? Yes, he continually seeks you and I, to engage personally, to relate to us at a deeper level.
You and I are a lot like little children. God comes looking for us. His preferred method is not to broadcast our names loudly from the heavens. Instead, because he knows us, I think he heads to those places we enjoy most.
Have you ever considered that maybe the best place for you to encounter God is that place you enjoy the most???
Perhaps a way of looking at a day of Sabbath is to consider what brings you great joy. Go there. Do that. And look for God to make himself known in the midst of your deepest joy.
A Sabbath (day or moment) for me almost always involves reading and journaling. I want to emphasize that I do those things regularly because, quite honestly, I enjoy those things. And I enjoy them in ways that I find God finding me.
Reading and journaling are not, in themselves, “sacred” or “spiritual” activities. It’s simply that God – the God who enjoys seeing me delighted – seeks me out in the open pages of a book, on the blank-but-not-for-long pages of a journal… because those are places of great joy for me.
If the thought of reading or journaling sounds dreary to you, DO NOT include them in your Sabbath! What does bring you great joy? Surrounding yourself in the beauty of nature… or indulging your tastebuds in a juicy steak… or filling your ears with sounds by our favorite musician… or smelling salty sea air with a fishing pole in hand… or reading a Psalm declaring God’s majesty… or cradling your newborn… or hiring a babysitter to cradle your newborn… so you can sneak away to your sandy little stream in the midst of all the concrete that is your work week.
Indulge in a pure form of joy. And look for God to make his Presence known in your midst. When you engage in that one thing that brings you such deep delight, you are creating a space where you can find the God who has found you.