Sabbath: From Rule to Life-Giving Rhythm

I once thought of Sabbath as a rule. On Sunday there should be no work, no studying, no running out for groceries, no going to the mall or shopping of any kind. Instead Sunday was to be a day of worship and rest: going to church for Sunday school and worship, lingering over lunch with family, friends, and newcomers, setting aside the busyness of the week for a day of rest.

Then I became a pastor, and Sunday became a day of work. For a time I thought of Monday as my Sabbath since it was my day off from ministry, although it didn’t seem complete without a time of congregational worship. I experimented with a digital Sabbath from Saturday evening to Sunday evening. I took shorter sabbath moments throughout the week with spiritual practices as sacred pauses. On this website I’ve shared articles like

As I’ve grown in my Sabbath practice, I’ve come to understand Sabbath not so much as a rule, but as a life-giving rhythm—for pastors and others who work for the church, and for anyone at any age and in any walk of life. This spring I’m eager to share “Sabbath: A Life-Long, Life-Giving Rhythm,” which is a new six-week on-line course that I’ll be teaching as part of Xplore, an enrichment program for those 55+ run by Canadian Mennonite University. 

Here’s the information for my course:

March 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, April 5

Tuesdays 11:00 – 12:00 Noon (Central Time), 9:00 – 10:00 AM (Pacific Time)

Sabbath: A Life-Long, Life-Giving Rhythm

with April Yamasaki; Resident Author, Valley CrossWay Church, and Author of Sacred Pauses: Spiritual Practices for Personal Renewal

“Remember the Sabbath day, and keep it holy,” says Exodus 20:8 as part of the Ten Commandments. Yet in Mark 2:27 Jesus says, “The Sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the Sabbath.” In six sessions, this course will explore the breadth of biblical teaching on Sabbath and how we might live it out as a life-long, life-giving rhythm, as retreat and rest, an act of resistance and practical refreshment that expresses reverence for God.

To register for just $50/person, please see Xplore: Keep Thinking and check out the other great course offerings.

Sabbath: From Rule to Life-Giving Rhythm
Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay


For more encouragement and resources on doing ministry better:

Author: April Yamasaki

I currently serve as resident author with a liturgical worship community, write online and in print publications, and often speak in churches and other settings. Publications include On the Way with Jesus, Four Gifts, Sacred Pauses, and other books on Christian living. Websites: and

Please enter your comment below:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.