I love to use my imagination for beauty and hope and whimsy. I have quite a fanciful dream life.
In our humanness, we tend to use our imaginations more for worry than wonder.
Scanning the horizon for the next blow, searching the skies for the proverbial “other shoe” to drop.
But today is Shabbat, Shabbat Shuvah, none the less. The “Shabbat of turning.” Turn with me for a moment, away from the dread that hovers and imagine your perfect Shabbat. For some of you imagining the perfect lazy Sunday may be more appropriate.
Where would you be? You can be ANYWHERE.
What are you doing?
Let your mind explore the possibilities.
Who is with you?
What decadent foods are near?
How are you feeling in this delicious place?
Drink it all in…
I am on the beach at sunset. The breeze is perfectly swirled with warm gusts and a hint of evening chill. My feet sink slightly in the sand as I wade along the coastline, close enough for a gush of waves to occasionally soak the bottom of my sloppily rolled pants. In this place, I am well, my energy is in abundance. My eyes can barely contain the masterpiece of colors extravagantly painted across the sky. A living canvas stretched out before me that evolves with the angle of the sun, while lacy waves dance like a thousand wild horses beneath. I have been here many times with my lover or my BFF, with my children wildly splashing and chasing every unsuspecting winged creature in sight. This time, however, it is just me and the Breath of G-d. His delight fills me like the golden light of this sunset and contentment is just too small a word.
This. Rest. Contentment. Safety. Shabbat.
What if Shabbat, the sacred day of rest, the sanctuary in time, was given to us to teach us how to live the other six days of the week? What if we lived our lives out of a steadfast inner rest? An Inner Shabbat. Selah.
But there are more bills than dollars!
Melodic waves tumble over each other to flirt with my toes…
Friends betray, expectations are too high!
The slipping sun casts its vesper rays warm on my bronze shoulders…
I am misunderstood by those who should understand, I am alone.
Breath of G-d blows my long dark hair away from my face…
I am sick, my loved one is sick.
The air is sweet and I drink in the fragrance of contentment….
I am overwhelmed, there are more needs than energy!
I watch as the sun-fire swirls surrender to sky purples in a dance of color…
There are no promises of a perfect life on the fallen Earth but our Father-King has left The Spirit whose job is comfort (Jn 14.26); the kind of comfort/shalom that blows our mind (Phi 4.7), it does not fit our circumstance, it is beyond what makes sense, it is supernatural, mysterious, undefinable.
A peace that is untamed in nature.
When we let that kind of peace fill us, there is no room for frazzled, overwhelmed is out of place, anxiousness becomes a lost wanderer.
The sanctuary in time becomes the sanctuary inside.
A place of rest. The Spirit’s dwelling place. The place we can live from. Dream from. Face this uncertain world from. Our Inner Shabbat. This 6th Day of Awe… Imagine with me a new way to be. Let’s imagine and live.