One sabbath he was going through the grainfields; and as they made their way his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. The Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the sabbath?” And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need of food? He entered the house of God, when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and he gave some to his companions.”
Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath; so the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
At my school, teachers talk about the “Sunday scaries” — that feeling when the weekend is ending and we still aren’t ready for school. This week, with the Martin Luther King Day holiday, we had Monday scaries instead!
I imagine the “scaries” are not unique to teachers. We all know the feeling — at the end of a break or a weekend — when thoughts of work creep into our time of rest. Mercifully, Jesus knows what it’s like.
Jesus says, “the sabbath was made for humankind.” As St. Ignatius would say, that means it is up to us to use the sabbath to glorify God. That surely includes setting time aside for God, like going to Sunday Mass. But it might also include food preparation for the disciples, or lesson preparation for teachers. And that’s o.k. The real question, at work or at play, is whether we use the sabbath to glorify God.
Good and gracious God, you gave us the sabbath as a means of pausing our routine to reconnect with you. May these times of rest renew our spirits, strengthen our faith, and deepen our relationships with you. We pray this through Christ Jesus, our Lord. Amen.
—The Jesuit Prayer teamPlease share the Good Word with your friends!