Mission Statement

Cyber Sabbath's goal is to begin to mend the division between Christ and the world (society) that Church has created through reflections, sermons and devotionals

Cyber Sabbath is a place for the stifled Christian voice to be heard. Media gives way to much time to the extremist - over looking the theologically educated and/or the moderates in favor of what sells their view point. Here, politics aside, a pastor reflects on God's voice in every day life.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Whine of Life

Often we laugh that we are truly "whining and dinning" when our children are screaming at the table for whatever reason.  Although I usually post positive about them, because they are great, there are days when the whine feels overwhelming.  Today is such a day, perhaps neither slept well as it was hot last night, perhaps the heat of the day has already broken through their skins or perhaps making waffles for breakfast and thus eating later was a bad call...whatever the circumstances it is not even 9am and all I hear is the high pitch complaint that everything is going wrong accompanied, of course, by the tears of true sorrow.  
By this AM, as I was eating breakfast and trying to ignore the demands for a different fork and the cries of the wrong cup for milk I had an insight - IS THIS WHAT WE ALL SOUND LIKE TO GOD?

God calls us to a relationship and yet instead we often treat God just like young children treat their parents, a complaint board with a long list of needs!  Sure we love him, but this is a relationship of lots of expectations and taking.  We might come to God as little children, but truly our relationship with the Divine needs to evolve beyond this.  As Parents and children our relationships grow and change.  My relationship with my mother is much different then it was when I was my children's age and I am happy for that.  I cherish our close relationship and the give and take that comes from it.  And isn't that the intimate relationship our Creator is expecting of us?  Not a relationship in which we demand, whine and lash out in anger.

But it is harder to live into that relationship - first because it requires work and second because it carries with it accountability.

Let's challenge ourselves, next time our prayer sounds like a whine to change from the whine of life to the love of God.  Let us encourage a relationship in which God's will is not consistently being over-run by the whine of life, thus drowning out God's will for our own demands. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

simple pleasures

So I am awe struck at my almost-2 year old's ability to love swinging.  Even after 20 minutes straight of just swinging, if you stop he screams "ME ME ME" cause he wants you to continue pushing him. Letting you know in no uncertain terms that it is still HIS turn on the swing.  Lately he has also loved riding his bike, although his verbal requests for bike riding seem more then swinging, he does not last as long. 

What keeps me in awe is his love for the simple things.  As adults we begin to lose this.  My daughter often says to me "Oh thank you Mommy!" with such true thankfulness and excitement in her voice over small things - sometimes it is a bath! 

I also can't help but reflect on how many people have told me that they don't go to church or listen to sermons anymore cause there is nothing new.  They are all preached the same way and there is no relevance to the Bible anymore.   This to me is surprising.  No matter how many times I've read the bible, and particular passages in general, I am still amazed when they speak to me.  When I find something new in them, I am reminded of the true concept of the Living Word. 

We as adults can't lose our drive for understanding and relishing in the simple things in life.  Reading favorite Bible passages may seem simple and trivia to some people.  But to those who know and have experienced their power realize there is a great deal to learn from in using them.  And there is something to be said to lose oneself on a swing or in a pretend tea party - where the cares of the world are forgotten. 

I would challenge each person to find a passage that speaks to you and use it as a mediation.  As a simple reminder that you are following God and attempting to hear God's will in life. And allowing yourself to step outside the adult world every once and a while were the cares are less and where being with God and accepting God's love are just done - without question and without rational.

This is a challenge we should all accept!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Understanding Forgiveness

I thought it would be good to revisit a post of mine from the past.  This is a previous post.  It is important to always look for answers in forgiveness.  Especially in church, we often hurt people in the name of God.  How then do we go about forgiving each other and maintaining our relationship with the Holy?  Some hurt from church is so bad that many people stay away from church and forgiveness in the sight of people who do not know or are not willing to recognize what they have done is truly a monumental task.  But nonetheless we are called to do such...here is a previous musing on the definition of forgiveness that may help. 

What does it mean, the word forgiveness?  Do I mean in common terms or Christian terms?

To unpack forgiveness, I first think we need to realize what it doesn't mean - that one needs to forget.  I also don't think that forgiveness means "go back to the way things were" or even that things go "back."  Some times forgiveness can be granted without it needing to be accepted and the other way around accepted without ever being granted.

Forgiveness in common terms is difficult.  It is difficult because of pride and hurt feelings but most of all it is difficult because it isn't natural.  What do I mean by that?  Well, it doesn't seem right to let people back into our lives who have hurt us - protecting ourselves from future hurt.  It doesn't seem right to forgive people who have done us harm (physically, emotionally, mentally...) because what is to stop them from doing it again.  Trust isn't something that comes easily to us humans and it requires a ton of trust to forgive - and especially since we are usually forgiving someone who broke that trust!

And yet, in Christian terms that is what God did for us.  We broke our side of the trust - of the contract with God.  Dating all the way back to the beginning, we continued to fall short of not only God's expectations but the trust that God granted to us.  Our tasks on Earth aren't really that grand and God's expectations for us really aren't unreal and yet time and time again we break that covenant - that contract - with God.  It isn't the other way around, God doesn't break the contract...well at least not since Noah and the flood...God keeps the Holy promises.  But how many times do we fall short of our promises to God?  How many times do we pray "this will be the last thing I ever ask for, if only..."  Or "God please help me with ... and I'll never ask for anything else."  Or "I'll stop acting or doing..."  We are always falling short of these the big requests but even in our daily lives when we claim we will pray more and then never do.  Or we go to church only for the social aspect of catching up on gossip instead of getting into the real worshiping of our Lord.  The bottom line is that we fail God often and yet, often blame God for failing us.  (but that is another blog).

Today we are looking at forgiveness and the fact that despite all of that and all the sins we continue to do on a daily basic (remembering that I define sin as that which keeps us from having a true relationship with God), God still offers us forgiveness.  What does that mean?  That God wipes the board clean and forgives us? No!  But that God, knowing our human ways and our humanity (fully understanding through Jesus Christ) grants us grace and forgives us...allows us to move on and continue to have an open relationship with the Holy.

Forgiveness doesn't mean that our relationship with the Redeemer goes back to what it was before our separation but it also doesn't stop it from being even greater.  It allows our relationship with our Creator to be anew, to be different and gives us an opportunity to walk a new path with the Divine.  

And in our lives that is how forgiveness should work.  It should allow us, not to forget the hurt that people have caused or the pain that we felt - for those are often scars that may never heal.  But instead allow us to say we are not going to give power to the negative - power to the hurt or living with the anger but instead we are going to move on.  As we do move forward with our lives, there is still room for those who afflicted the pain, should they choose to change their behavior.  There is still room for relationships to be had - but they will never be the same.  However, forgiveness does not always mean that relationships, human relationships, can be restored.  Sometimes the forgiveness is that both parties are able to move on, letting go of the past and creating a new future.

Accepting forgiveness from God is one of the hardest things to do - especially when you feel unworthy; but truly giving forgiveness out can be another of the hardest things we do...partly because of the overwhelming feeling that it means things need to revert back and amnesia needs to set in and partly because truly moving forward is never easy.  But let me assure you that forgiveness is not about forgetting.  It is about moving on, moving past and allowing the new paths in your life to carry you to the future.  It does mean, accepting what has happened to you and accepting the wrong that was afflicted on you.  It also means accepting the person and the faults of the person who did the wrong.  It means accepting to trust again - putting yourself out there to continue to love, trust and live.  Once you have settled your forgiveness - you will not be the person you were before and your relationship will never be the same but you won't let either get in the way of the path that God has set before you.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

computers a luxurious life

So yup, my computer has met its demise. Perhaps whatever Dell is sending me in the mail will restore my computer, but until then I am forced to borrow - yes only from my husband but still!

It is amazing to be me how far we have gotten in just my lifetime with technology.  Often when I watch elders interact with new technology I am awed at what it must be like for them.  Tablets that now access the world are so slim, imagine the number of volumes of books one used to have to own just to amount to a tenth of the knowledge - wow!

As we reflect on the fourth of July and the celebration of our country.  I cannot help but think about the amazing transformation that life has gone through from the first days of settlement to now.  Those first America's and especially those who fought for independence lived in a time without much luxury.  At least compared with today.  For today, I drove to work in AC, am sitting in a AC building and will drive home comfortably.  I will even use a flushing toilet. 

What independence meant to them now and what it often gets used to mean today are some times very different.  The freedoms that we take for granted today are great and the freedoms we yield at a drop of the hat (like the right to sue) are something I think we should take some time thinking about.

As Christians, we choose to put God first.  We choose to follow God's will and we are lucky enough to live in a country that we can do that.  We also, however, often fail to remember that God is first.  Choosing instead freedom to make stupid choices, choices that go against the will of God. 

Use this weekend, to remember that God has already chosen us to be his people, let us in turn put God first!  And remember the true journey of our country honoring those who came before us, affording us today with a luxurious life.