For the past year Church leaders have promoted renewed attention on keeping the Sabbath day holy. This fits right in with my blog for the past two weeks. Taking a regular break from the cares of our lives can rejuvenate us to start over. And clearing and respecting the space to honor the Sabbath helps us to live our best life.
But what can we do on the Sabbath? We commonly hear, “Spend time with family.” That answer doesn’t really help singles who don’t have their own family. Furthermore, single parents with children can easily feel the Sabbath is far from delightful when their children make constant demands on their attention.
Over the years I’ve heard singles complain there’s nothing for them to do on Sundays. These individuals often focus on the obstacles — what we’re told not to do — rather than the opportunities — the possibilities for making the Sabbath “a delight” (Isaiah 58:13).
Your focus becomes your reality. So let’s make our reality of Sabbath day observance delightful by focusing on some possibilities for honoring the Lord’s day.
Seed your creativity
A recent blog post on the Church website provides an original list of appropriate Sabbath activities. What I love most about this list is the seed it provides to one’s creativity in the search for possibilities of new but appropriate Sabbath-day observance.
Although geared towards families with children, the list contains some items perfectly suited towards singles. For instance,
Other items on the list are more family oriented, so if you're a single parent, this list can seed your thinking. But with a little adjustment, it can do likewise for singles without families of their own. For example,
Open the door
With a little creativity, you can open the door of possibilities. As just shown, that can mean adjusting ideas on the Church-provided list to your situation. But it can also mean opening your mind to many ideas not on that list.
Family history work. Family history work is a great way to spend the Sabbath. I personally don’t do family history work on Sunday because many others are, slowing down the servers. But if that doesn’t bother you, have at it! The refining and purifying effect of participation in family history work is a great way to make the Sabbath “a delight.”
Plan your week. The Sabbath “is a day appointed unto you to rest from your labors, and to pay thy devotions unto the Most High” (D&C 59:10). A weekly planning session can help you do just that. Taking a step back from your weekly routine can help you see more clearly how well you’re keeping your covenants. Are you making time for what matters most? Planning your week can help you clear the spaces you need to respect in order to live your best life.
Learn a new language. Language study keeps your mind agile, helping you confront challenges during your week more effectively. Language study can also help you gain insights from the scriptures in other languages as well as share the gospel with more people (D&C 88:78-80). Plus it can help you to teach your children to speak other languages, preparing them for future missionary service. And it need not cost a lot of money. Most adequate foreign language dictionaries cost around $5, an introductory lesson series on MP3 from Pimsleur costs around $20, and many smartphone apps such as Duolingo are free. Resources abound; you just have to look for them.
Read a good book. I love reading, especially Sunday reading. It’s a great way to rest from my weekly cares and make the Sabbath truly delightful.
Of course, there are plenty more ideas out there. Partner with the Lord to find the ideas that make the Sabbath your delight. Then make it happen. And if you have an activity idea that has helped you, feel free to share it below. Let’s help each other make the Sabbath more delightful for all of us. Then we can all reap the blessings of keeping the Sabbath day holy.
Howdy! I'm Lance, host of Joy in the Journey Radio. I've been blogging about LDS singles life since 2012, and now I produce a weekly radio show to help LDS singles have more joy in their journey and bring all Latter-day Saints together. Let's engage a conversation that will increase the faith of LDS singles and bring singles and marrieds together in a true unity of the faith.
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