Surrendering to Sabbath – Week 6

by | Feb 15, 2013 | Weekend


H and I woke up in a hotel room last Sunday, ate room service with his mother at a conference table, and packed up our dirty laundry from the week. I spent the majority of my Sabbath in the car. We sat in silence for the first hour, watching the trees blur while our weary hearts warmed to the sun streaming in through the windows.

We discovered the secret to making biscuits on NPR. I read snippets from Love Does out loud to H. In between dozing off and private conversations with God, I made up stories in my mind about all those shacks out my window in the middle of abandoned patches of weedy fields. For four hours I thought about what I’ve taken for granted about love.

Sometimes you need to be trapped in a car to have Sabbath.

It’s really not as much about where you are or what you do, as it is about harnessing your heart and mind around the One chasing you with abandon all week. He’ll wait for that moment when you stop long enough to recognize he’s been there all along.

And when you do stop, all the questions fogging up the mirror in your mind, they will melt away. And your reflection will become crystal clear in the countenance of His unfathomable grace.

I once heard somebody say that God had closed a door on an opportunity they had hope for. But I’ve always wondered if, when we want to do something that we know is right and good, God places that desire deep in our hearts because He wants it for us and it honors Him. Maybe there are times when we think a door has been closed and, instead of misinterpreting the circumstances, God wants us to kick it down. Or perhaps just sit outside long enough until somebody tells us we can come in. ~Love Does by Bob Goff

Interested in joining the Surrendering to Sabbath Society, a growing sisterhood of nearly seventy that say, “Yes, I’m all in”? Send me an email:


Links around the web worth a click:

Barbara Brown Taylor on Sabbath – we initiated Redemptions Beauty Book Club with her book Leaving Church last year.

52 Sunday Suppers – Kristin shares some fond memories of Sunday dinner and her pot roast is “the way pot roast should taste” according to H.

How Midrash Can Change Your Spiritual Life Forever by Margaret Feinberg

What Do You Need to See In Your Life Today by Holley Gerth

Holey, Wholly, Holy by Kris Camealy – a free e-book for Lent when you sign up for Kris’s newsletter.

And just a whisper here: I found out today that I lost hundreds of my followers in the migration of this new website. I would be ever so grateful for your continued presence in this community by joining through email or a preferred RSS feed. Thank you.



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  1. Lori Ferguson

    My husband and I often travel on a Sunday, and we value that quiet time very much. I’m so happy to find another couple who “reads” to each other. When we travel long-distance (more than a day) I pick out a book to read out loud to Robert as we drive. (We read Love Does at Christmas!)

    • Shelly Miller

      We don’t always do that but when we have, it’s usually been significant for each of us. Don’t you love that book by Bob Goff? The stories are so good. Nice to see you here Lori, thanks for visiting.

  2. Pam

    Love that quote from “Love Does.” A word for me at the moment. I still get your emails for the blog, but they seem random. I haven’t received this one yet, I was just checking over here. I’ve also noticed that the link I have to your blog on my blog doesn’t bring me to your most current post anymore. It takes me to an old Sabbath one and I have to click on “home” at the top of your blog to get the current one. Not sure why this is happening… Pam, apples of gold

    • Shelly Miller

      Pam, when I switched over I lost all my reader followers. I’ve been heartbroken about it because I redirected the site here before I did a post to let everyone know. If you want to get my posts regularly you have to join the community through email or another RSS feed.

      • pam

        I will do that…but I do still get some of your wordpress emails. Just not always timely. Strange…

  3. Lyli Dunbar

    Yes! Love the peace that is found in long drives to no place special with my husband beside me. We often drive silently or we plug in a worship CD and sing along.

    • Shelly Miller

      We’ve had a few of those too Lyli, just listening to music and worshiping. Those are sweet times.

  4. Sandra Heska King

    I do love those quiet car times, just watching the world, reading and dozing and praying. As long as I’m not the driver, of course. A beautiful Sabbath to you, my friend.

    • Shelly Miller

      Sometimes it is good to have nothing to do but that isn’t it? To you too Sandra, pray you have a restful one my friend. So glad you are joining the sisterhood.

  5. Elizabeth Stewart

    I love how He pursues us until we’re still and quiet enough to realize it!

    • Shelly Miller

      He’s so patient and kind, beyond my comprehension.

  6. Kris Camealy

    Im so thankful for how you have encouraged me to observe and experience the Sabbath. Each weekend I find myself eager and hungry for the rest, eager for the time to listen and abide, knowing that He waits for me to slow, to come and sit…. Thanks, Shelly. You bless me so much!

    • Shelly Miller

      So glad you are partaking of the rest and peace Kris. We realize how much we need it, how much it fills us up when we do it. I look forward to those 24 hours now more than anything else the rest of my week. It’s like having a date with my Saviour every week.

  7. Jillie

    Shelly…Still marvelling at your new ‘look’ here. It’s truly lovely. I am receiving you in my email inbox just fine. But I know Lynn has been having some difficulty with it. This is a beautiful post, Shelly. I like what you write about the Sabbath being more about harnessing your mind and heart around the One whose been chasing you with abandon all week. That’s my idea of truly engaging Sabbath.

    • Shelly Miller

      So glad you aren’t having trouble commenting Jillie. Hoping Lynn figures it out. I told her I may have to change my commenting system back just for her. It won’t be the same without her words here.

  8. Jody Collins

    Shelly, when I think about a Sabbath rest, I always go back to Hebrews Chapter 4, “There remains therefore a Sabbath rest for the people of God.” Our rest is in Christ’s finished work because he DID IT ALL–covered our sin, carries us in our striving, He complete the work we could never do–and we enter in by faith.

    I can’t make any rules for myself about when my sabbath will be–sun up one day til sunset the next–because life always happens. And I just feel condemned. I know myself well enough now to never make a promise to God that he didn’t give me in the first place ’cause when I make a “From now on I’m going to do such and such” vow, I fail every time.

    I think your paragraph captures it well-
    “It’s really not as much about where you are or what you do, as it is about harnessing your heart and mind around the One chasing you with abandon all week. He’ll wait for that moment when you stop long enough to recognize he’s been there all along.”
    I’ve been stealing my Sabbaths 15-30 minutes at a time outside on my deck, reading God in the Yard by LL Barkat (and I took a day off in the middle of week from school to just rest…………….3 naps and a massage).

    He is there when we stop and look to him.

    Perfect post my dear and an encouragement 🙂

    • Shelly Miller

      So glad it was encouraging. And maybe it is easier to live into Sabbath the way it is commanded when we learn to take little steps toward undoing all the busyness, one day at a time like you are describing.

  9. HisFireFly

    yes, this. He can give us rest anywhere, when we lift our hearts to Him

    • Shelly Miller

      It’s really about welcoming peace isn’t it and being intentional about rest?

  10. Diane Bailey

    I’ll be in the car most of tomorrow. Today is mostly spent making meals for Doc to live on while I’m gone. Shabbat Shalom, Shelly

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