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Six Marks of a Church

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Practice Sabbath Delight: Part 1 – EH Leader Podcast

Posted on July 2nd, 2019

Practicing Sabbath is, as Eugene Peterson said, “a workshop to practice eternity.” In fact, he equated a busy pastor with an adulterous or embezzling pastor considering both to be scandalous.

In this podcast, I share a sermon I gave as part of a series on work and calling (you’ll note that in the introduction. Click here to find that sermon). Why? Sabbath is God’s foundation for our work. It guards us against the powerful idol of making our work the center of meaning for our lives, protecting us from defining ourselves by our work.

The following is a brief assessment from The Emotionally Healthy Leader around your practice of Sabbath. Take it and see how you are doing.

How Healthy Is Your Practice of Sabbath Delight?
Next to each statement, write down the number that best describes your response. Use the following scale:

5 = Always true of me
4 = Frequently true of me
3 = Occasionally true of me
2 = Rarely true of me
1 = Never true of me

  1. I regularly practice Sabbath by setting aside a twenty-four-hour period in which I stop my work and rest.
  2. Sabbath provides a healthy boundary and limit around my paid and unpaid work.
  3. I take time on my weekly Sabbath to delight in God’s innumerable gifts (e.g., people, beauty, hobbies, mountains, food, music, etc.).
  4. I view Sabbath as a day to practice eternity and taste the ultimate Sabbath rest when I will see Jesus face-to-face.
  5. I practice Sabbath as a prophetic, counter-cultural act that resists the culture’s value that defines me by what I do rather than who I am (i.e., God’s beloved son/daughter).
  6. I am comfortable letting go of my responsibilities on Sabbath, fully trusting God to run the world and build his kingdom without me.
  7. I find my identity primarily in God’s love rather than in my work or my role as a leader.
  8. I often receive unexpected insights and discernment during Sabbath.
  9. I apply my Sabbath guidelines of stop, rest, delight, and contemplate to extended vacations and holidays.
  10. I intentionally prepare and plan for Sabbath so that I have the time and space to focus on God’s love coming to me through the many gifts from his hand.

Take a moment to briefly review your responses. What stands out most to you?

Click here for an excellent, free discussion guide on The Emotionally Healthy Leader to talk about it with your team.

Enjoy the podcast!

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