Growing up we did not frequent church on a regular basis. We were sort of like the holiday Christians, going to church on some major event. All this changed when I was fifteen. My mom got a harebrained idea and decided we needed to go to church again. The idea didn’t consist of merely going back to church on a regular basis, the idea was going to include keeping the Sabbath as well. This involved not only the omission of my Saturday activities but the omission of my Friday night activities because it was “Sabbath”. The realization that I was not going to be able to play volleyball the following year angered me and I rebelled against this idea with all the passion that a teenage girl can muster. Needless to say this was not a pretty sight or time in our home, but I caused my mom to break down and allow me to play at least one sport. I of course chose volleyball. Before you start questioning the apparent hypocrisy of my mom who said we were going to keep the Sabbath and then she turns and lets me play one sport as if all the other days cover the breaking of those 3 months; read on because God had a bigger plan. It was really hard for me to give up my sports because this was my place of escape, an escape from the trials of my life. It was a place that I felt like someone because of the team around me. I was half way decent therefore I felt like I contributed to something which gave me a good feeling. With my sophomore year starting and the volleyball season approaching I was feeling guilty because of playing on the Sabbath and not keeping the day Holy unto the Lord. So at 15 years old I made a “deal” with God. I said that if he didn’t want me to play on the Sabbath then allow me to get hurt and then I would know He wanted me to keep the Sabbath. It just so happened that our first game of the season was a Saturday tournament. Can you guess what happened? On the first game of the tournament and one of the first plays I went up to spike the ball and came down and landed on one of the opponent’s foot which was over the midline. This of course caused me to role my ankle and I was out for the rest of the day. You would think that this would have been at the very least a clue that God was trying to tell me something in regards to my deal that I made with him. I said to myself that this was not from God because I was not hurt bad enough and was not in a wheel chair so this must mean that I can still keep on playing. So I continued to play and the coach made everyone where ankle braces from that point on. The following year, my junior year, the conviction that I was sinning and not keeping the Sabbath Holy tormented me again and I just said to the Lord,
“I am not strong enough to tell my friends and coach that I can not play. They need me and I don’t want to let them down. So Lord you are just going to have to cause us to move because I can’t say no. I know this is not going to happen because we have no money to move and where would we go?”
My mom was laid off at the time, we lived in government housing, and the food bank was like our grocery store. What money would we have to move with let alone set up a new home? Thinking that I stumped the Lord and backed Him in a corner because I perceived that this prayer was impossible, God showed me that nothing is impossible with Him. About a month before the state tournament my mom informs my siblings and I that she has contacted my dad (they had been divorced since I was about 3 and I saw him only a hand full of times since then) and they are getting back together and we are going to move! Keep in mind that I have forgotten all about the second prayer I had made with the Lord, probably because I thought it was impossible so I discredited it. Because of this second absurd idea my mom had I become enraged and dumbfounded at the same time. I have but a matter of weeks before my world is turned upside down not to mention the fulfillment of this idea is supposed to take place around the time I am supposed to play in the state tournament. After I made another teenage girl explosion it was decided that we would leave after the tournament when the season was over. The situation in regards to our volleyball team looked like this: predictions made in the papers were that we should take first at state. This came about because we were undefeated for the entire season, not only did we win every match but we won every game within those matches. We also took first at districts leading to the thought that we would come out 1st at state. So upon my return from the tournament I walk in the door to see my mom and dad sitting at the table talking and they ask me how we did and what place we got at state; I annoyingly mutter, “seventh”. My dad bursts out laughing. I snap back saying I don’t see how that is so funny and he says, “Don’t you get it? You were supposed to be ranked first but you got seventh, the Sabbath not the first day of the week”, and he proceeds to laugh some more. Extremely annoyed about this correlation I grab my bags and march to my room while he is still laughing. It was not till some time later, after our move, that I remembered my prayer to the Lord. It was then that an added realization of His power was revealed to me. It took me a while but I got what the Lord was trying to tell me which is the Sabbath is important. I played volleyball at the new school I attended but told them from the beginning that I would not play on Sabbath. In God’s mercy He was patient with me and I did not have to end up in a wheel chair for the point to be made. This was my first experience with being tested with the Sabbath and it was not my last. I know that there will be more to come. Even now there are those who think it ok to make a law that all should worship on Sunday. It will only be by God’s grace and truth that we can stand in the face of persecution; defining ourselves with the maker of heaven and earth. I have heard that those who keep the true Sabbath are called legalistic but out of their same mouth they will say that we need to be obedient to the Lord. God instated Sabbath and obeying Him is not legalistic. Legalism is applying “men’s” rules to God’s rules.
Exo 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
Exo 20:9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:
Exo 20:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
Exo 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
Exo 31:16 Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant.
Exo 31:17 It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.
Joh 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
Joh 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.
Joh 16:8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: