Listen to this devotional:
Bright sunshine flooded the fields as I drove to church. In one, a Holstein calf caught my attention as it gambolled around, testing its legs. Meanwhile, its mother contentedly chewed her cud.
Malachi 4:2 – But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. (NIV)
In another dandelion-dotted meadow, two colts broke away from their mothers, racing flat out across the field. Meanwhile, draft horses meandered along, grazing as they went. Every now and again, a mare would raise her head to follow her offspring with her gaze. In another area, a horse rolled in the grass kicking its hooves!
Isaiah 32:20 – How blessed you will be, sowing your seed by every stream, and letting your cattle and donkeys range free. (NIV)
However, the animals were not alone in rejoicing. In our area, the Sabbath is observed. As one Amish man put it, with a smile as wide as a barn door, "I can work any day, but not Sunday. That's our day to rest and relax!"
Exodus 20:8-10 – Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals. (NIV)
On Sunday, the Amish not only relax from a hard week's work, they spend time together. First they worship, then share a communal meal. Following that, the men gather by the barn to visit, while the women do the same at the house. The younger boys congregate in one part of the yard while the younger girls generally "hang out" on the porches. In winter, the routine is indoors, altered only by weather.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, may we worship You within our own church communities. As we gather, may we rejoice together through Christ Jesus. May we celebrate Your Sabbath rest, but even more, may we desire to honour Your will and Word, each and every day. We pray in Your name. Amen.