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Sabbath Observance


Lamanite

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Just curious about how others observe the Sabbath.

I live in the Daybreak community near the Oquirrh Temple. There are lots of trails and playgrounds and grassy fields to play on. Today I took my four daughters out for a run about 2 hours before Sunset. Here is a short list of what we did:

1. Ran hard and fast.

2. Ran slower and sang Bob Marley Songs.

3. Found a park with lots of hills and rolled down them till we couldn't stand up.

4. Found a garden of giant rocks and stood atop them and pretended to give speeches. We recited the preamble and I recited Matthew 5 (Sermon on the Mount)

4. Sang church songs as we watched the sun set on the Temple.

5. Played on the swings and talked about school, friends, life, etc.

6. Ran home and sang a song that each person chose.

When we got home we were sweaty and grassy and very happy! I think it was a Sabbath well spent.

Anyone else take a more conservative approach to the keeping of the Sabbath. I'm perfectly fine being attacked here as I put myself out there.

Big UP!

Lamanite

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When my husband was on the high council, I had 4 young children. Needless to say, he usually went on assignments to far flung wards and branches alone while I handled our children alone in our own ward. If the weather was nice, I always brought PB&J, bread and juice boxes in the car and went to the park after church for a picnic. Going straight home with grouchy kids and trying to get dinner going, unloading the diaper bag and all the tedium that follows taking kidlets to church made me resent my husband's calling. Going to the park is what made my Sabbath a day of rest and kept my husband alive to speak another day.

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Sounds good to me. I genuinely believe that the key to enjoying the Lord's day is, as Isaiah suggested, to turn from our wills on that day and focus on doing what the Lord would do. I'm pretty sure that includes playing with kids.

My day yesterday:

1. Picked up one of my priests and took him for a driving lesson. We started off practicing starting up in first gear in a car park and then moved onto quiet streets before hitting a suburb filled with roundabouts and finally tackling some traffic lights. He made enormous progress over the course of the morning.

2. After dropping this first boy home to change into church clothes, I started picking up other Young Men, none of whose parents attended church yesterday. I got all four of them there in time to perform their sacrament duties.

3. Church.

4. Brief meeting with Bishop to discuss a difficult situation involving one of our Young Men.

5. Took four Young Men with me (two priests and two teachers) and, at Bishop's request, visited an elderly sister in our ward who fell off her step Friday and hurt herself quite badly. There the boys spent time talking with her and then administered the sacrament to her.

6. Dropped three of the four boys home.

7. Brought the fourth boy home with me where I spent the next hour and a half teaching him and a non-member friend some basic swing dance moves. I love that he's keen to learn to dance!

8. Dropped this boy home.

9. Headed to the home of one of my Young Men who'd earlier asked for some help with a school assignment. It was due today, but he hadn't finished it since he'd been helping his family shift house all week. He didn't really need much help beyond encouragement since he was so tired, but I cheered him on til he was finished with it. In between cheering, I did a bit of wrestling with his younger brother, who turns 12 this year.

10. Headed to the home of my new second counsellor to attend the end of their FHE. His cousin-in-law who lives with them is also one of my Young Men. I was there for most of the lesson, the games, the family business, and the closing hymn. I even got to say the closing prayer. The YM has a court date for this Thursday, so I spent time afterward talking to him about that. He said it would help if he had an updated character reference to give to the magistrate, so I'll write one of those for him. I then spent the rest of the evening talking to my counsellor about his first week in his new calling.

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What you do is less important than your focus. If your focus is on Christ then you will know what is right.

Sometimes I am not focused. Today I am less than focused, and watched Revenge of the Sith. Otherwise I love being around my family and just enjoying their presence. When I worked and traveled internationally I was sometimes gone for many weeks. It almost cost me my marriage, so I can understand how important family is. I was lucky, I didn't lose my family before I realized their importance. So we sit and tell stories and discuss what we do next week and cook and talk about church and the Lord.

Aside from the meetings at church.

Man I love those light saber battles,

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Two Sundays ago, the deacons met back at my house after finishing their fast offering collection. Two were already here when I got back with the lot I'd taken in my car, and, when we walked in, they had taken their shirts off and were engaged in a wrestle. The father of one of them soon arrived to pick his son up and said he was disappointed that the boys would be so willing to break the Sabbath after performing their priesthood duties. I told him he reminded me of Sidney Rigdon and shared with him a quick version of the following anecdote, recorded here by John D Lee. One Sunday during Zion's Camp, the Prophet had encouraged the men to wrestle to lift their spirits (and their body temperatures), of course joining in with them.

While the sport was at its height, Sidney Ridgon, the mouthpiece of the Prophet, rushed into the ring, sword in hand, and said that he would not suffer a lot of men to break the Sabbath day in that manner. For a moment all were silent. Then one of the brethren, with more presence of mind than the others, said to the Prophet:

"Brother Joseph, we want you to clear us from blame, for we formed the ring by your request. You told us to wrestle, and now Brother Rigdon is bringing us to account for it."

The Prophet walked into the ring and said, as he made a motion with his hand:

"Brother Sidney, you had better get out of here and let the boys alone; they are amusing themselves according to my orders. You are an old man. You go and get ready for meeting and let the boys alone." Just then catching Rigdon off his guard, as quick as a flash he knocked the sword from Rigdon's hand, then caught him by the shoulder, and said: "Now, old man, you must go out, or I will throw you down."

Rigdon was as large a man as the Prophet, but not so tall. The prospect of a tussle between the Prophet and the mouthpiece of the Prophet was fun for all but Rigdon, who pulled back like a crawfish; but the resistance was useless, the Prophet dragged him from the ring, bareheaded, and tore Rigdon's fine pulpit coat from the collar to the waist; then he turned to the men and said:

"Go in, boys, and have your fun. You shall never have it to say that I got you into any trouble that I did not get you out of."

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I think that the Sabbath is a special day. I try not to focus on worldly things but on spiritual things. Focusing on family is a great way to spend the day. I don't have any problems with what you did as long as you think it appropriate.

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What you do is less important than your focus. If your focus is on Christ then you will know what is right.

Sometimes I am not focused. Today I am less than focused, and watched Revenge of the Sith. Otherwise I love being around my family and just enjoying their presence. When I worked and traveled internationally I was sometimes gone for many weeks. It almost cost me my marriage, so I can understand how important family is. I was lucky, I didn't lose my family before I realized their importance. So we sit and tell stories and discuss what we do next week and cook and talk about church and the Lord.

Aside from the meetings at church.

Man I love those light saber battles,

I didn't need to read that. I'm sitting in the middle of Pakistan on a business trip.

Any suggestions or things you would have done differently when travelling?

I am working up the courage to give a BoM to a muslim friend before I leave. He was shocked when I told him I don't drink. they think all westerners drink.

I try to keep the trips down to two weeks at a time every other month. And attend church if there is one.

MGE

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There has definitely been a drastic shift in attitudes towards the Sabbath day since I was a kid. It seems even among the leaders I see, there is a casualness towards certain activities (eating out, going to parks, museums, the beach) that were totally taboo in days past. One Bishop I've had even joked about how he would go home teaching to "Jack's" sometimes between meetings on Sunday afternoons. Another recent Bishop built a nice pool in their backyard and would have "family time" on Sunday afternoons in the pool.

And when I was young, playing in sport leagues on Sundays was also a cardinal sin for the youth, but it seems to be much more accepted in my area.

I'm not judging these activities, I'm just noting that it was always my impression that we at least wouldn't talk about such Sabbath activities at Church.

As for the Church itself, there certainly hasn't been any letup in the guidelines for the Sabbath.

On a related note, can anyone remember a talk given in conference (or printed in the Ensign) in the last few years where the author told the story of their young son riding his bike on Sunday and getting hit by a car? I remember reading it, but can't find it anywhere!

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I didn't need to read that. I'm sitting in the middle of Pakistan on a business trip.

Any suggestions or things you would have done differently when travelling?

I am working up the courage to give a BoM to a muslim friend before I leave. He was shocked when I told him I don't drink. they think all westerners drink.

I try to keep the trips down to two weeks at a time every other month. And attend church if there is one.

MGE

Well, you and I are in different orbits. While mine was to further career, yours is much more important, and with greater consequences. That means that you have more leeway than I did (as it should be) from your wife. Also the military often has a wife support group, and maybe even and LDS wives support group. Something to look into. Otherwise I would write. An email is one thing, but a letter written by your hand expressing your love for the family and maybe pic's. That is something else entirely. When I started writing more, it kept me feeling close and when I wrote specifically to each child specifically in their own letter (not sure how old your kids are, but your wife will save them), they loved it too, even if mom had to read the letters.

With everything on line, you might want to consider setting up a scripture reading schedule with your wife, so both of you are reading them on the same day, and sending questions or observations about the scritpures to her, and vice versa, it will help strengthen the overall connection.

Otherwise beg for her patience, and always let her know how much you care for her. I think all of htis will help. It is what I should have done then.

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There has definitely been a drastic shift in attitudes towards the Sabbath day since I was a kid. It seems even among the leaders I see, there is a casualness towards certain activities (eating out, going to parks, museums, the beach) that were totally taboo in days past. One Bishop I've had even joked about how he would go home teaching to "Jack's" sometimes between meetings on Sunday afternoons. Another recent Bishop built a nice pool in their backyard and would have "family time" on Sunday afternoons in the pool.

And when I was young, playing in sport leagues on Sundays was also a cardinal sin for the youth, but it seems to be much more accepted in my area.

I'm not judging these activities, I'm just noting that it was always my impression that we at least wouldn't talk about such Sabbath activities at Church.

As for the Church itself, there certainly hasn't been any letup in the guidelines for the Sabbath.

On a related note, can anyone remember a talk given in conference (or printed in the Ensign) in the last few years where the author told the story of their young son riding his bike on Sunday and getting hit by a car? I remember reading it, but can't find it anywhere!

Focus on the sabbath is a relative not objective thing. So I can't speak about the issue where another is concerned. I do know a CFO for a bank that is literally gone all week. So Sunday's he does what he can with the family and sometimes that entails what others would consider less "sabbath oriented". His family is active and pretty much seems Christ centered to an observer, so I cannot fault the results. Their actions do not necessarily preclude a lack of focus on the Sabbath. But lets say their actions are less "orthodox".

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We take a more conservative approach.

I'm sincerely interested in why my activities may not be in harmony with keeping the Sabbath holy. Can you tell me why I should be more conservative? Or at least why you choose to be?

I would really appreciate the dialog

Big UP!

Lamanite- sent from bb

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I'm sincerely interested in why my activities may not be in harmony with keeping the Sabbath holy. Can you tell me why I should be more conservative? Or at least why you choose to be?

I would really appreciate the dialog

Mr. Big Up,

I never said your activities are not in harmony with keeping the Sabbath day holy. I'm just stating that I personally view the Sabbath day in my own way and take a conservative approach to it. Maybe it is kind of like movies and T.V. - I take a conservative approach there as well compared to some other people. I don't have a problem with the way others approach it and never complained about people watching football games on Sunday. I simply have my way of doing things that works for my family.

The activities you listed sounds fun and was likely a time for you to bond with your children, which is great.

EDIT - oh, I see you are asking why I choose to be more conservative.

I am conservative because the Sabbath day is sacred to me and I want to make it feel different than other days to my children. I want my children to respect the day as well.

Regards,

Zee

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Mr. Big Up,

I never said your activities are not in harmony with keeping the Sabbath day holy. I'm just stating that I personally view the Sabbath day in my own way and take a conservative approach to it. Maybe it is kind of like movies and T.V. - I take a conservative approach there as well compared to some other people. I don't have a problem with the way others approach it and never complained about people watching football games on Sunday. I simply have my way of doing things that works for my family.

The activities you listed sounds fun and was likely a time for you to bond with your children, which is great.

Regards,

Zee

I knew you were commenting personally and were not in anyway judging me. I just was hoping someone would debate from a hyper orthodox position Sunday appropriate activities.

But Sabbath observance thankfully is not outlined by specific do's and don'ts. So it would probably be an exercise in futility

Big UP

Lamanite- sent from bb

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Just curious about how others observe the Sabbath.

I live in the Daybreak community near the Oquirrh Temple. There are lots of trails and playgrounds and grassy fields to play on. Today I took my four daughters out for a run about 2 hours before Sunset. Here is a short list of what we did:

1. Ran hard and fast.

2. Ran slower and sang Bob Marley Songs.

3. Found a park with lots of hills and rolled down them till we couldn't stand up.

4. Found a garden of giant rocks and stood atop them and pretended to give speeches. We recited the preamble and I recited Matthew 5 (Sermon on the Mount)

4. Sang church songs as we watched the sun set on the Temple.

5. Played on the swings and talked about school, friends, life, etc.

6. Ran home and sang a song that each person chose.

When we got home we were sweaty and grassy and very happy! I think it was a Sabbath well spent.

Anyone else take a more conservative approach to the keeping of the Sabbath. I'm perfectly fine being attacked here as I put myself out there.

Big UP!

Lamanite

I don't see anything wrong with the above.

I notice, though, that you did not decide to skip your Sabbath day meetings in order to do the above. Such a thing would strike me as being out of keeping with the Sabbath and contrary to scriptural direction (see Doctrine and Covenants 59:9-12).

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Here's a funny story.

A local amusement park has one day each spring for "Roller Coaster Enthusiasts", of which my son, daughter and I are. The day includes backstage tours of the park, a scavenger hunt, Q&A with management and roller coaster designers, a catered lunch, and time before and after the park opens and closes for "exclusive ride time" to ride the rides without having to wait in line. It's a pretty big deal, and people travel from all over the country to attend.

But it's always on Sunday. So we've never gone.

So this year, it was finally scheduled for a Saturday! Hooray. We got our tickets, and we've been looking forward to it for months. It was like God had heard their pleas, and rewarded us for keeping the Sabbath Day holy.

Then we find out that the Ward's super-duper important youth baptism trip got scheduled for the same Saturday :P.

Guess who isn't going to the do baptisms-for-the-dead this year...

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Here's a funny story.

A local amusement park has one day each spring for "Roller Coaster Enthusiasts", of which my son, daughter and I are. The day includes backstage tours of the park, a scavenger hunt, Q&A with management and roller coaster designers, a catered lunch, and time before and after the park opens and closes for "exclusive ride time" to ride the rides without having to wait in line. It's a pretty big deal, and people travel from all over the country to attend.

But it's always on Sunday. So we've never gone.

So this year, it was finally scheduled for a Saturday! Hooray. We got our tickets, and we've been looking forward to it for months. It was like God had heard their pleas, and rewarded us for keeping the Sabbath Day holy.

Then we find out that the Ward's super-duper important youth baptism trip got scheduled for the same Saturday :P.

Guess who isn't going to the do baptisms-for-the-dead this year...

I'm OK with that. You can schedule another time to do the baptisms.

Some years ago, our stake conference Saturday night session was scheduled on Halloween. Not only would it have meant our family missing the traditional Halloween activities, but we had young children (still do) not old enough to attend that adult session of conference. That night, it would have been virtually impossible to find a baby-sitter, as prospective baby-sitters in the neighborhood would either be observing Halloween or (as older teens or adults) attending the conference session themselves. (We don't have extended family living nearby who could have watched the kids.)

Moreover, our ward boundaries had just been realigned, and we were still adjusting. We suggested our new ward join with our old ward for a trunk-or-treat activity it had planned a few nights prior to Halloween as possible compensation to the kids for their having to miss Halloween. The ward council decided against it because the longtime members of our new ward had recently had a block party and, well, they weren't interested in being involved in another activity so soon.

I felt like we were put in an impossible position. I elected to skip the conference session and take the kids trick-or-treating while my wife went to the conference session and took notes.

I have never regretted our decision.

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Anyone else take a more conservative approach to the keeping of the Sabbath. I'm perfectly fine being attacked here as I put myself out there.

We all have had to "pull our oxen out of the ditch" on occasion, but I do suspect that throughout the Church we have all became far too casual in our observance of the Sabbath. In fact the local tradition in our Stake of "dinner on the grounds" has evolved over the years from one of necessity during Stake and Ward Conferences when travel times were such and that many felt the need to have a common meal to avoid people eating out on Sunday, now it has evolved into a very popular quasi-Ward Social of sorts which is planned out by the activities committee, so it seems that this casual attitude seems prevalent throughout the Church. I suppose the rationalization is that since Family Reunions are usually approved Sabbath activities, and since they more often than not involve similar features as these "dinner of the grounds" then it is deemed acceptable as a fine LDS "tradition" and now instead of just conferences it is also often a 5th Sunday activity. In some units in the Church these "linger longer" or "dinners on the grounds" have been prohibited, but it has yet to become a Church-wide policy of not allowing these "parties" on Sunday, but I must admit that much of the work required to have these events seems to be in violation of the spirit of law of the Sabbath. In light of our studying the Gospel Principles manual for PH & RS I wonder when we get to the following statement if perhaps some will feel uncomfortable:
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We tend to take a fairly conservative point of view about Sabbath day observance, mostly because my husband and i have schedules that allow us to do all the 'going to the park', picnicing, wilderness adventures, and sports playing during the weeknights or on saturday.

Therefore, because we want to perpetuate the notion that 'sunday is a special day, different from every other day of the week' there is no way that we could do those similar things on a sunday without losing that distinction (in our opinion).

We're not **** about it though. We have family dinners on sunday with the extended family and play board games, have family home evening, and sometimes do some badmitton in the front yard of such gatherings as well. We have non-member family that we sometimes travel to go see on sundays too so we make exceptions to our normal schedules so we can spend time with them.

Basically, as a mother of young children, i have two goals: I want my kids to know that Sunday is the Lord's day so we treat it differently than the other 6 days in the week, in more ways than simply going to church. I want them to enjoy Sundays.

If an activity works with those goals, then we don't usually have a problem with it.

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This can be 100% true in my experience.

Just as with most things, i think it depends on the person rather than the activity.

Can someone have a spiritual experience in a beautiful place outdoors-absolutely. Can someone use the excuse of 'getting closer to God' to do an outdoor activity when they know they aren't going to focus on God at all while they are out there-absolutely.

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