December 19, 2018

This Is the Day

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Ps. 118:24 

Mainline Protestants tend to think of this verse as something we say on Easter Sunday—perhaps because of the importance of the two verses that come before it (the stone that the builders rejected...). But of course, it's something we ought to say (or at least remember) every morning. And it's not a bad thing to think about in the afternoon or evening, either.

But my Congregational ancestors especially applied this bit of scripture to the sabbath, which was really the only holy day they observed—but they observed it at least 52 times a year! As Jonathan Edwards said,
We should therefore meditate on this with joy; we should have a sympathy with Christ in his joy. As he was refreshed on this day, so we should be refreshed, as those whose hearts are united with his. When Christ rejoices, it becomes all his church everywhere to rejoice. We are to say of this day, This is the day that the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
As I look forward to Christmas every year, maybe I should pause in the middle of each week to look forward to sabbath: the day God created for my refreshment, growth, joy, and peace.

Thank you, Lord, for your gift of sabbath. Help me not to use its hours in vain, nor neglect the gift of rest you grant me; through the One who taught me to pray...
maranda curtis • this is the day

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