"How I... Sabbath." A Community Link Up!

“How I… Sabbath.” A Community Link Up!

Very few people let us peek into their imperfect-in-progress worlds to see the behind-the-scenes of how they do something. 

Those who do? Pure gift.

That’s what this community is all about. 


We weren’t meant to do this life alone, but connected with other members of the same body.

So the “How I…” community links up every Wednesday. Brave and lovely people who want to practice hospitality open a virtual door to their knee-high mess so you can see the way, the truth, and the life through their boots-on-the-ground experiences.


The truth is: We need your story. 

We need your perspective, your experience, your insight.

Do you observe any kind of sabbath? How do you knead rest into your life? 

Today’s Prompt: “How I… Sabbath.” 

Joining this Community is as Easy as 1-2-3! :

1) Simply scroll to the bottom of this post and click the blue button to link up.

2) Make sure to grab the “How I…” community button from the left sidebar and add it into your post, or use the link www.WhereGivingHappens.com so we can find each other’s stories!

3) Visit the person who linked up before you and leave and encouraging comment.

That’s it! I can’t wait to see what you share!

I’ll go first:

My Story: “How I… Sabbath.” 

Exhausting things happen.

Recently, for example, our family car died (on the side of the road, with all five of us girls in it). The children have been creatively destructive (I’ll have to post a pic of what they did to some poor mini blinds later). And I have had to make tough decisions about ER visits and doctor’s advice.

So a sabbath? — A day of rest? — is glorious. And needed. I look forward to it and soak it up.

The “how” of how I sabbath looks very different from week to week, life season to life season. But it is my perspective, my mindset (not the activities or lack thereof), that makes a sabbath restful to me.

I want my children to know by repetitive experience that rest, stillness, slowing down, savoring, embracing and enjoying relationship is core to effective and abundant life.

And this — embracing and enjoying relationship — is the heart of sabbath rest. 


Rest is found in God’s embrace. In relationship with Him. In His presence. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” ~Matthew 11:28

Here is the “how” I live out the embracing and enjoying the rest God gives:

The Day

Thursday has been my sabbath day for the last couple of years. It is the day that works best with our family schedule. If I know of a conflict, I adjust my sabbath day.

The No, Nope, Not Todays

Rest for My Mind: My sabbath days are mostly screen free. I have found that when I shut down various streams of “input” I am able to see, listen, and enjoy in ways that are hindered otherwise.

Rest for My Hands: I boycott housework (yay!). Minimal food prep — usually heat-up meals unless the girls and I are all in the mood to create something together.

Intentional Availability for the Kids

I used to get so frustrated when I attempted to have a sabbath with kids and they smashed all my pretty ideas to bits. I wanted to lay in my bed under my gorgeously soft comforter and read a George MacDonald novel. I envisioned quiet aloneness.

And while solitude is extremely valuable, healthy, beneficial — observing a regular sabbath in my home will not include copious any amount of alone time.

God kept tapping my shoulder that it is ridiculously easy for me to be around my littles but not invest in them. This tires out my soul in a different kind of way on a deeper level — this being around my kids but not fully engaging with them. It weighs me down.

By drawing to my attention the way it moved me when someone was kind to one of my girls, God regularly impressed on me that one of the best ways to love Him is to love His children.

So it’s taken a long time, but now on sabbath days I usually look forward to giving my kiddos time for the board book they want to read. And the second. And the third. Sometimes I dance to a song with them and enjoy feeling the grin of a soft, chubby cheek next to mine. I snuggle them longer. I let them slow me down by “helping” me make a meal.

It doesn’t exhaust me like it used to. The change in my expectations and perspective enables me to rest with them.

Party Time 





Our sabbaths often have an afternoon “party” of some kind. A tea party is their favorite kind of celebration because, of course, they get to eat. I serve up simple snacks and we light candles (a dozen times because they like blowing them out). The girls properly address me as “mademoiselle” or “madame” or “queen” and they request “a spot of tea” and pinkies are definitely raised.

Towards the end of the tea party I sometimes read them a short section of scripture. Then they can each choose a figurine that represents a story from my legacy box (my foundational experiences of God) that they would like to hear.

This is definitely a #thinkSMALLER situation. Creating these parties only takes me a couple of minutes. I don’t plan ahead. I don’t buy special items. If we are gifted a treat by a neighbor or family member I’ll hold those goodies for Thursdays. No matter what I do, the girls love it. 🙂



It’s amazing how easy it is to let days go by without praising the One who set (and keeps) me free. One of the ways my soul remembers how to take a deep breath is through song. I especially feel rested, rejuvenated, and strengthened by singing songs about who He is and how He loves.


So that’s it. 🙂

Now it’s your turn!

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Writing Prompt for Next Wednesday: “How I… Forgive.”





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  • I love it! This is one I was definitely looking forward to reading because I lack so much in this area! It is a subject I have been wanting to delve into and be more intentional about!

    • Thank you Olivia! 🙂

      I am working to be more intentional also… things have been somewhat thrown off since I had the baby (3 and a half months ago now! Time flies) and I’m looking forward to tomorrow and getting back into the rhythm of resting each week.

      Whatever you decide to do please let me know. I’d love to learn from you as you learn. 🙂

  • Elise, I LOVE this! “And this — embracing and enjoying relationship — is the heart of sabbath rest.” I have been thinking hard lately about what it means to Sabbath and what God is calling me to in it. I think your “definition” is heart spot on, and I love these practical examples you give of what practicing this type of rest (especially with little ones in active tow) looks like for you. Blessed by your words.

    • Becky! 🙂

      I am so grateful for you. God has really blessed me through your words and I am not a hugger but **hug**.


      You’re amazing.

  • I definitely want to do some sort of party like that with E, what a great idea! I have found that there are certainly times that it is worth it to read the stack of five Amelia Bedelia books that he will bring to me when he has a “great idea!” And reading over my comment I just realized why he must use that phrase so often.

  • I especially like “By drawing to my attention the way it moved me when someone was kind to one of my girls, God regularly impressed on me that one of the best ways to love Him is to love His children.” It has always been things like this that help me understand the Father’s love for me, for us, and to understand how loving each other is such a blessing to Him.

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