Several people sent me their story via e-mail, and I wanted to share a few over the next few days. Here's some of what Christine from Michigan shared with me. If you think you can't do Sabbath with small children, you need to read her story:
Hi Keri - Ever since I read your book Breathe a year ago, we have been trying to practice the Sabbath.
We do not call it Sabbath, rather family day. We spend the day going to church and Sunday School in the morning, and the rest of the day is family activities. I love asking the kids, who are now 5 and 6 years old, "What do you want to do today?" That makes them feel so special.
Some days are restful, with walks in a nearby parks and reading, other days we may go to the movies. It is our day to spend as a family, without doing projects and running around. Some weekends are hard, and we are not perfect, and we may end up having to go to the grocery store. But, we don't give up and look for another day. It is getting easier for me as a mom to do.
At first it was very difficult, as I have the worker mom personality - when I sit down, I think of everything else I should be doing, the laundry, cleaning, packing lunches, email, etc. I just need to remember the fun as a family we are having, the renewal of keeping God in the center of our lives, and the memories we are building.
The busier we get as a family, the more important it is to remember to always keep God in the center of our lives.
In your Breathe book you wrote about not having your children in every activity. This made a major impact on me. We have turned down competitive gymnastics for our kids, as they are so young. By keeping your priorities as a family in line, (family meal time and discussions, daily reading of the Bible) it helps to free up family and spiritual growth time. Now that I have reduced some kid activities, I have begun to look at my life and look to where I can cut back church and school volunteer commitments.
My kids' favorite activity on this day is go to a nearby nature park. We take a long 2 mile walk through fields and over a bridge in the woods, with adventures all the way. Finding fish off the dock, throwing stones, taking pictures, and enjoying all that God has made. It really renews your spirit and gets you ready for the upcoming week. We generally pack snacks, and on the way back we take the path by a huge hill. We all climb to the top, see how far we can see, and have a race to the bottom.
Thank you for your inspiration for you have giving me the tools and ideas to change my life to a more relaxed walk with God and with my family.