If you have been to the same church lately, get LDS emails/tweets/FB posts/pinterest pins, or are even just friends with a practicing Mormon you probably know the Church headquarters is putting greater emphasis on keeping the Sabbath day Holy.
So I've been thinking about it lately, the last few weeks. What can we do in our home to keep the Sabbath day more holy? I've been thinking about it more than a few weeks, now that I'm over postpartum depression I can actually interact with my children on Sunday. So I keep wondering what am I doing to improve their Sabbaths?
Then today in our third hour of church we had a big meeting for everyone 12 years and up about keeping the Sabbath day holy. A lot of good things were shared.
Like Elder Nelson talking about once he read Exodus 31:13
Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you.
All the lists of everything you should and shouldn't go out the window because its all about what sign you are giving to your Father in Heaven.
Ezekiel 20:20 was also shared.
Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you.I'm an obsessive note taker, I think that's the reason I blog for all 38 of you. So I took some brief notes on how to spiritual improve my family's Sabbath in very non-measurable terms. But as humans we are for whatever reason obsessed with lists, so I decided we shouldn't watch movies anymore on Sunday.
I'll tell you about my Sabbath, after church.
We ate lunch, I put the little ones down for naps.
My husband went home teaching.
Both my older kids wanted to watch a movie. I said can't we come up with a better way to keep the Sabbath day holy? They both said I guess. We read The Friend, my daughter colored a picture, my son read, and then I was so tired I wanted scream. When I wouldn't help my daughter play The Friend games online, I made her cry.
So I went to take a nap. It seemed like the best way to handle the situation. A few minutes later when my husband came home, they asked if they could watch a movie and he said yes. Which was 100% the right answer. I've been thinking about the days events.
- When I have a spiritually uplifting Church attendance its almost mandatory I take a nap. I get too overwhelmed otherwise. In fact some Sundays when I come up with too many ideas how to improve our lives my husband tells me to take a nap, and I crash in about 5 seconds. I feel like the Doctrine and Covenants teaches this concept.
- I'm a mom of small children I always need a nap.
- I don't want my children to hate the Sabbath, and saying no movies, might not be the best way to teach a love of the Sabbath if their little brothers and their mom is napping.
- I still don't allow any video games other then The Friend activities and xbox kinnect sports if their dad wants to play with them.
- Bizarrely enough I do not allow children's tv shows even though I allow a family friendly movie or documentary. But I don't allow annoying movies on Sunday
- I should take my own advice:
(Every Sunday at dinner I remember talking with my father about we learned about in church. We discussed the gospel every Sunday, but that doesn't mean they entertained us the whole day. I'm sure we often complained that we couldn't do anything on Sunday, but I think more often we didn't even think about it because it was a non-issue in our house. It was what it was. Point being I spent a lot of Sundays watching a family friendly movie, and I'm no worse for the wear. So I'm ok with my kids watching a movie, but not as immediate activity, more as a ok, we've talked, we've read, I'm sleepy please don't bother me, if you think that is the best use of your time you are welcome to make your own choice.)
The comment that came directly after mine, I very much appreciated. He said, you know it doesn't matter how many Monolopy games you've played as a family on Sunday, how many lovely walks you take, if you aren't testifying to your children the importance of Sabbath in word and deed it doesn't matter what else you are doing. And I think that was a great follow up. Every single Sunday my parents took the opportunity to discuss the gospel with us. But that doesn't mean that sometimes we didn't run around, and that definitely doesn't mean we sat on the sofa all day long reading our Biblical verses.
So the moral of the story is:
What am I doing to improve my Sabbath and my family's?
What sign am I making to the Lord?
My number 1 goal is to clean and vacuum the living room Saturday afternoon. (Saturday is a Special Day, its the day we get ready for Sunday.) I hate having yucky carpet on Sunday afternoon. That is my goal as a family, the whole house doesn't need to be clean, but if my carpet is clean when I play Spot it as a family then I'm more likely to feel the spirit in 20 minutes after the tears that were caused by whatever stop. Yes, a clean carpet is the sign I want to send to my Lord. Its the sign of yes, I prepared to be spiritually filled today, give me the patience I need to love your children.
My other goal is to stop shopping on Amazon on Sunday. I always say, but I'm not making anyone work. But I recently saw in article about over worked employees in Amazon shipping factories. Other than not vacuuming on Sunday we actually do a pretty good job of preparing on Saturday. These are two small changes that wouldn't cause tears every Sunday. This are two small changes that I can make that show a change of heart.