Shabbat Shalom!

Saying “Shabbat Shalom” is so common here in Israel that I sometimes wonder if people even internalize what it means.  “Shalom” means peace, but it also means complete or whole.  For example, one can buy chicken breasts at the meat counter “shalem”, meaning whole.

Taking Friday evening to Saturday evening to focus on our relationship with G-d, and to serve Him, more than the rest of the week, is such a blessing.  It should be a rest in the service of G-d. It is a time to turn off telephones, computers and televisions and all of the distractions of this world.  It completes us again for the coming week.

Recently I was reading some online news outlets and I was struck by the number of articles in their “lifestyle” sections which dealt with “digital detox”, incorporating more peace and quiet into our daily lives, how to regain balance, de-stressing, inner peace and increasing calm into our lives. G-d told us in the Bible what His plan is for how to do this.

“Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.  Six days shall you labor and do all your work, but the the seventh day is the sabbath of the L-rd thy G-d, in it thou shalt not do any work…”

As an aside, it is very interesting that while studying these verses, I read several commentaries.  None of them wanted to discuss the first part, which tells us which day not to do any work…the Sabbath day.  So many people say that you need to keep a sabbath day, and not the Sabbath day.  But G-d is very clear that He wants us to keep the seventh day, which is Saturday.

The point we need to remember is that G-d knows us perfectly and if we follow His word, He has provided for us in every way and for every need.  When you pray and seek His will for your life and how you are to serve Him, the Holy Spirit will guide and direct you and give you the rest you need.  But we need to seek it in His ways, not ours.  Have a blessed Shabbat.

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