About the Episode
How do you Sabbath when your job happens on Sabbath? Today, my guest Cristi Schroeder talks with me about the importance of rest for Ministry and Church staff and how they can practically accomplish it.
About My Guest
Cristi Schroeder is a pastor’s wife of over 20 years and a mom to two teenage boys. She recently became a licensed minister herself! She’s a writer and an entrepreneur helping women to live for God’s purposes. And she is trying (desperately) to love salads as much as ice cream.
Click for Transcript
Rest doesn’t have to be a four-letter word. If you feel like you’re about to break from exhaustion. Let me invite you to Simply Sabbath, a podcast for the burnt-out Christian mom, who longs to get back to the core of who she is and to reclaim the deep joy and stabilizing peace Jesus has for her in her every day– without the mom guilt that often accompanies self-care practices.
Hi, my name is Rachel Fahrenbach and I help busy moms just like you add a simple restful family Sabbath to their week. So they can experience a refueling that gives them exactly what they need to live the life that God has called them to. I’m so glad you’ve joined me today. Let’s get to it.
Rachel: Every so often I get questions from individuals who are involved in church ministry or on staff at a church about how to [00:01:00] Sabbath. It’s hard to comprehend what Sabbath could look like when you work on a day everyone else is resting. That’s why I’m so excited to welcome my friend, Cristi Schroeder. Did I say it right? Awesome. To today’s episode. Cristi is a pastor’s wife of over 20 years and a mom to two teenage boys. She recently became a licensed minister herself. She is a writer and an entrepreneur helping women to live for God’s purposes. And she is trying desperately to love salads as much as ice cream, me to Cristi. Actually, I had a salad for lunch and I’m like, this is not the greatest thing ever, but it’s food.
Um, I’m so excited to talk to you about this topic of taking a Sabbath rest when you’re involved with church ministry. So before we dive in, though, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself and your family, and then let’s kind of talk about what, how do you define what [00:02:00] Sabbath is.
Cristi: Well, thank you so much, Rachel.
First of all, for inviting me to be a part of this, it’s so exciting and such an important topic. I think for all of us, whether we’re in ministry or not, I am excited because I just joined hope writers in may of 2021. And that’s how we got connected. And that is because I want to be a writer when I grow up.
So I began to, um, write a young adult novel. And, um, I’m also working on a different book. That’s more nonfiction regarding living for God’s purposes. And that is my passion in life is just to help other people live with purpose. Because as I have figured out that God has so many purposes for each one of us and every single day is an invitation to a new one.
I want to spread this message with other people. And so I’m doing that through writing. I recently was hosting an online membership sisterhood. I have paused for the moment [00:03:00] I’m doing online coaching and courses, things like that. And just like you said, I just became a licensed minister with the assemblies of God.
And so I don’t know where God is going to lead me with that, but it’s just me working alongside my husband, um, who has been pastoring for 20 well, we’ve been married 24 years and we got married when we were 22. We met when we were 15, we now have 14 and an 18 year old sons, um, and had just enjoyed this crazy ride called life full of ministry, full of a lot of different things.
We live here in central Wisconsin, um, and just enjoy family time. And enjoy, we do, we do enjoy the Sabbath rest, which we’ll get into that. Um, but just living life and having fun and enjoying being a mom to boys as well. My senior is here for one more year. Oh
Rachel: yeah. It’s just soak it all in every lab. Um, does it, [00:04:00] does it, do you ever think about the fact that your oldest is like almost the age you were when you met your husband?
Cristi: I know it’s crazy.
Rachel: My mom talks about that
Cristi: 29 again. So how could this possibly be?
Rachel: mom always talks about her and my dad met when they were, she was 15 and my dad was 17. And so she talks about like, when I first turned 15, she’s like, I was so young. I was so young. Um, but I think it’s always fun when our kids hit those milestones.
And you’re like, I remember when that’s crazy that, well, it sounds like, um, you have a very full life and yet you have committed to taking a Sabbath and so why or rather, what, how do you define what Sabbath is in your life?
Cristi: Yeah. Well, I think that my definition has evolved over the years. I don’t know if there’s one definition given in the Bible.
Um, [00:05:00] but what I used to think of it was the day to rest. Um, keep the Sabbath day holy, I knew it was one of the 10 commandments. And I think where I’m at right now is especially as I have such a passion for women to live with purpose and constantly pointing people to the first two greatest commandments, which are to love God and to love others as yourself. And so the way that I look at Sabbath now is that’s one of the top 10 people that is like, you know, one of his most important things. And I really think that keeping the Sabbath day holy helps us to do those two greatest commandments with way more efficiency and enjoyment and hopefully more effectively.
So I see it sort of as just a compliment of the suite of, I mean the commandments are not just things that we have to do. They’re actually blessings for us. And so these are just some of the gifts God has given [00:06:00] us. And I’m just so thankful that he included it in there.
Rachel: I often say that Sabbath is a gift wrapped up in a commandment. Because I think it’s really what it is. It’s, it’s this outstretched invitation and just like the other nine, are there an invitation to doing life the way that he originally designed it to be. And I think you’re right in that there. Um, I think it’s really interesting in that how. Sabbath kinda the command to Sabbath kind of fits right in between the command to love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, and then the commands that have to deal with how you relate to others.
And I think that Sabbath piece is kind of the hinge of that. Like you’re talking about, it helps us love God in a deeper way, and it helps us love others and reconnect to them in a deeper way. And so, so what does Sabbath look like in your life?
Cristi: Well, currently, I look at Sabbath this [00:07:00] way that it is a days to not be productive. And like we talked about, I am a pastor’s wife and so Sundays we are on, we are up early. I will take time alone with the Lord. Like I will be other days, head off to church. We have prayer time with everyone at church. We have the service and worship. Lots of times we’ll go to lunch with someone and I consider it part of our ministry and its work. Yes. As much as we wish it would just be like, you know, no, it’s all great. Just roses it’s oftentimes work it often.
Rachel: Are you a naturally, are you naturally a people person?
Cristi: I am an introvert that’s right on the line. So I can turn on the extroversion and I love meeting people and I really do love people.
Um, I’m a people person. I have lots of connections. I’m a connector at church and the church foyer. I’m going crazy, just introducing people to everybody, but then I do crash.
So yeah, I need my time alone. [00:08:00]
Rachel: And I want to point out like, I, I do believe that. Ministry work, like when you’re on your on, right?
Like you’re, you’re looking at conversations in the foyer and a different way than the person standing in the foyer. You know what I mean? And so even if you’re introvert or extrovert, um, though I do feel like that plays a big part in how much you crash afterwards. I still feel like it’s work and you do crash.
Like it, the mindset that you’re in the, the hyper awareness. In that space in ministry, you’re just hyper-aware of how you need to serve other individuals. And so yeah, you do have that moment. It is work. It is not, it is not the same thing as when you are being, you know, ministered.
Cristi: Yeah, I agree. So for that reason, we go to church, we maybe go out to lunch and then we come home.
And for me, I just look [00:09:00] at it as a day to not be productive. And I’m a natural go-getter. I am just a very, um, I’m a high achiever. I’m a striver. I say that with the cringe. I wish I was not. I love to, um, get out and get it done. Just to give you an example, like when my husband, who is like a popular, peaceful type, he just, you know, chill and have fun.
That is what we are here for. And when we first got married, I would be like cleaning the house and just, you know, huffing and puffing. And he was not getting the hint that I thought he should be cleaning the house with me. It should be and all this with me. And he just like, what are you talking about?
I’m chilling. I’m relaxing. I just say that to say it is not in my nature to relax. Like I, even if I would try to watch a movie, I’d have to be like doing my nails and then doing some other project and like doing it multitasking. And so. It just doesn’t come [00:10:00] naturally to me to rest. And thankfully, like I said, we’ve been married 24 years and I’ve learned about personality types and that’s helped so much for me to chill myself and realize the value of that chilling out that coming calming down.
And so he’s been an amazing example to me about that, but for me, To chill and to stop. I mean, I can do it for two seconds and I’m up again without realizing it. I don’t know if people especially busy moms, you probably know what I’m talking about. Like you see this other thing over there, you got to do this.
Yeah. So for me, just to be able to say that this is going to be an afternoon and an evening where I don’t do anything productive, that means as an entrepreneur, I’m not getting in some extra hours of work. That means even with ministry, I’m not writing out cards for work for people in my church. It means for me as a mom, that I’m not trying to get chores done.
And this used to be the explosion of the week. Like finally, we’re all [00:11:00] home. Can’t you just clean your rooms, kids, you know, like yeah. Who didn’t do the dishes and it would turn into cranky house instead of that time of peace, which is what Sabbath offers for. And so now my kids love, love Sabbath because I’m not telling them that they need to clean things, but in time for us all to rest and to chill and to just experience the calm that God asks us and invites us into.
Rachel: Oh my goodness. There’s like so many things I want to talk to you about right now. Okay. First what day do you Sabbath then if you guys are
Cristi: okay, well, this goes back to kind of the origin of why I started to Sabbath. Is it okay if we get into that a little?
Rachel: Yeah, let’s do that. Let’s go there.
Cristi: So, um, with my online membership, I had a sisterhood of women and every month I would choose a different topic. And so in December the craziest busiest time of the year, I said, Hey, we’re going to talk about soul care [00:12:00] and I love to choose something and then figure it out. And so I had to become the expert on this topic of soul care. And I really dove into with my ladies, the difference between self care, which I would say could be going to the spa or having a girls’ weekend or something like that, where you’re kind of taking care of yourself, but it does have a little bit more of a self centered.
Um, you know, core to the whole thing versus soul care, which I believe can only happen through that outpouring that comes from God that he pours into us, that he is like that oil that heals the insides in ways that we can’t do watching Netflix. And so a big part of that would be like taking time in prayer, taking time, reading the Bible, taking time, taking time in stillness.
Um, any of those celebrations of discipline that are talked about in that famous book, like what will bring us [00:13:00] closer to the heart of God? And so just feeling like we needed to dive into soul care, but I, myself being a pastor’s wife, I was not perfect. None of us are. And so I was being challenged when the women would talk in conversation, I asked for their ideas and one of my ladies said that she practiced Sabbath and I sort of felt bad and ashamed because I hadn’t been.
And she said, what she does is make a physical way of starting Sabbath. And so she would bring a, she would light a candle when she started her Sabbath. She said, I can’t do it for a full day. I don’t have a full day, but I will light my candle and set it on the table in the center of the house. And everybody knows that we are experiencing Sabbath rest.
And that got me to think I don’t have a whole. But I could take those Sunday afternoons. Like what if, what if, instead of discounting the whole idea of Sabbath? Cause I don’t have a whole day. What if I start where I’m [00:14:00] at and give God that time? The afternoon in the evening on Sundays. And so we started that and we started lighting a candle on Sundays and we started, um, That that idea of not being productive came to me because otherwise I will find everything that is possible to do on a Sunday afternoon.
And to filter for me to say, is this going to be productive or is this just really rest? Is this soul care? Is this allowing God to heal up what I’ve cracked up and gotten dry and gotten greedy throughout the week? Can he heal that today? And so I think that’s just a good way to look at.
Rachel: I love that so much that you didn’t just discount the idea.
You didn’t just discount, discount the invitation to rest. You said, okay. What would it look like in our, in our house, in our home, in our week? And you implement it. And I love that, that you didn’t let it stop you from practicing it because you didn’t have a full 24 hour timeframe to take.[00:15:00]
You had mentioned about, um, not letting the time to rest, I’m not letting it be filled up with ministry related tasks. And I think that is so easy for us to do. Because if the first moment I think about, you know, those of us who have been in ministry and I’ve, I’ve been in a couple of different ministries over the years, but those of us who are in ministry, who, um, specifically for a Saturday or Sunday, like church service type ministry, um, children’s church teaching, you know, uh, being part of the AB team or whatever during church, uh, there’s more than just the day.
Like you have a lot of behind the scenes stuff that happens even before you get there. And it can be tempting because our lives are full of our, maybe our day jobs and getting kids off to school. And, um, or if we have a home business, like you get the kids [00:16:00] off to school and you start working on that, or if you’re homeschooling, that takes up your time.
And so it’s tempting when we have time off from our regular scheduled programs, um, to fill them in with the ministry related items, but you’re saying, Hey, you still need to take a step back and not even do ministry on the, during that time of rest. Do you have any suggestions or tips for how to fit those things in if you’re not doing them during your Sabbath time?
Cristi: Well, just like we fit everything else and you’ve just got to make it work somewhere else. Um, I think it is determining in our heart. What are we going to let slip like? Um, I once heard. You would keep this promise for everyone else. Why aren’t you keeping it for yourself? And I think like, we need to promise to ourselves just like we would promise somebody else, Hey, I am going to do this, or I’m not going to do this and then stick to it.
And [00:17:00] I guess where I’m coming from at this point after having lit my candle and determined and announced it to the family. And they’re like, oh mom, what? What’s this new thing we’re doing now? Now that we’re two years into it. I don’t always light a candle because I don’t need to, I don’t need to have that necessarily.
The kids know what to expect. Everybody’s here and we know what to expect. Now I’m on the other side. And I realize those blessings that you talked about, I realize. God, didn’t tell us to keep the Sabbath day holy, because he was mean, and he was trying to test our loyalties. He, I think did it because he loves us so much because he wants us to be well taken care of.
And he wants us to experience that rest and that recovery, because he knows that if we are going to go out and do good ministry filled with the holy spirit, we, we are going to need to be filled with the holy spirit and that empty. And not like continuing to try [00:18:00] to do it on our, on our own. And I think that’s one huge thing that God taught me through.
This is just not even in spite of the fact that I can’t go out and get that letter written or call that call or do that thing or meet with that lady. But because I’m not doing it, what God, what is God doing? Who else has God using? How else has God? Impacting my life in the lives of everybody else. Like he’s doing something good because I’m not doing something which is really hard to grab, um, grasp hold of in my brain, but it’s true.
And I’ve seen him work in ways that, you know, if I was out there trying to do it on my own, it just would not have happened quite as well.
Rachel: So, right. Yes. I think that practicing Sabbath helps you tighten up how you live the other six days of the week, because you are that’s good focus [00:19:00] when you’re know you’re going to be taken just like with any event.
When we think about like vacationing or, um, Christmas, or anytime that we like a specific event that we’re entering into, we have to prepare for that event. We take time off from work. We get a babysitter, we get the meal prep. Do you know. We do things to prepare. And I think the same, thing’s true with Sabbath that when we know we’re about to enter into Sabbath, that the rest of the six days we have to prepare for that.
And that means we get the ministry things done, we get the work thing. Then we get the house things done and we allocate time on those other six days. Um, I. I wonder if it would be possible for those who find themselves busy on Sunday morning or busy on Saturday evening, you know, some church services me on Saturday evening.
Um, if they could Sabbath from Friday night to Saturday morning, right. You know, or Sabbath, you know, just Saturday [00:20:00] morning or like you’re doing Sabbath after church on Sunday. And, but the, the thing I think we’re talking about here is being intentional with that it’s setting it aside and putting a marker and saying, this is what we’re doing.
This is the field, the flag in the ground saying, we’re Sabbath now. And we’re not going to let anything infiltrate it. And so we’re gonna spend the other six days of the week protecting the Sunday, not letting anything slip. And I, you know, I don’t think that we ever really have time for anything. We, we have to make the time for it, you know?
Often when I’m given this question of like, how do I Sabbath, I’m involved in ministry? It takes up my weekend. Um, first I typically ask them, do they have another day they can Sabbath with them.
I love what you’ve done with the, the afternoon of Sabbath or a Sunday. Um, and then I asked them to reevaluate the ministries that are involved in. Of course, like [00:21:00] everybody that is a leader administrator, like, oh, please don’t say that because they’re like, they need the volunteers. Right. But I think that it would be better for us to have volunteers who are finding rest once a week so they can live out their, their time in ministry better.
Like you’re saying than to have a bunch of burnt out volunteers filling our, our ministry. Would you agree with that?
Cristi: Yeah. And just this whole thing of Sabbath, like of course our churches, aren’t keeping Sabbath. If the pastors aren’t keeping it, like we need to be doing it as leaders and we need to be showing how do we do it?
And I admit, this is not perfect. Like I wish I had 24 hours to give, and maybe I will get there, but this is a realistic way to start. And what you’re saying is to find that time and then stick to it. Um, in the church we teach about giving God our first fruits. So whether that’s tithing or however you look at that [00:22:00] 10% or not, we’ve talked about, start with what you can give.
So if you can’t give 10 to. 2%, you know, whatever. But what, when I was 16, I became a Christian and my family wasn’t Christian or anything. And I learned about tithing through my church. And when I got my first job, I just started tithing because that’s what I was told to do. And I don’t think about it anymore.
I just tithe I just write that check. It is not a part of, it’s not even a thought like, oh, but I’d rather get this or that. No. And look how God blesses that the rest of the 90%. Right. You don’t even need to think about that first fruit anymore. And so even when you’re talking about how do you make a way on Sundays?
When you’re getting into it, it feels like this huge chunk, 10% of my income, what in the world and the other side, once you started to do it, you can not imagine not doing it because you see the benefit of it. Just like I’ve seen God providing financially for a poor pastor’s family. And there’s so many unique, creative ways, two years into doing [00:23:00] Sabbath on Sunday, afternoons and evenings.
I’ve seen so many benefits and. Now we’re training up our boys. So they’re teenagers and they have jobs and they would love to work Sundays to make more money. And we put the rule down that they don’t work on Sundays. And I’m hoping that this trains them, whether they stick to Sundays as Sabbath or not. Um, but the benefits for us as a family or.
On a Sunday after church, if we want, we could drive to our, the grandparents’ house, which is an hour away and we’re all available. We could do something as a family. We can just be chilling, like teaching them by example, what that looks like. And I don’t think they’re going to want to do it any other way.
I get older. And I just think like, if you will give this a chance, if you will practice Sabbath and you will start to learn the blessings that God gives you because you’re resting and the healing that he does in your life for me, I look forward to Sundays. Like, even if I’m having a bad day, I’m like Sunday is coming.
Sunday is coming. There’s nothing on [00:24:00] the calendar for Sunday. You know, we’re so overworked and we say yes to everything. Honestly, it’s your easy, no, on a sun. Like whenever you take your Sabbath, it’s an opportunity for you to know. I get to say no for that day because I’m putting God first and he honors you for that.
And it’s, it’s a really beautiful thing. So the blessings become motivator more than any kind of sacrifice you think you’re needing to make you start to realize no, I’m the one who’s winning by doing this.
Rachel: There’s so much wisdom in what you just said.
It’s very true that it isn’t easy now for us, we can say, Nope, this is, this is our time. And obviously there’s flexibility and grace in all that, if a wedding comes up or something, you can say, okay, we can go to the wedding. But, um, I think that’s true in that. It’s a very easy, no, and we’ve sometimes.
Forget that I think when we feel obligated to say yes to everybody. What is the one thing that you’ve [00:25:00] experienced or how has Sabbath changed your life by practicing it?
Cristi: Well, I hope it’s okay. I got, I got the scripture out to share because of course, one of my favorite scriptures ever
Rachel: Lay it on us.
Cristi: All right. This helps me to explain that, um, in Matthew 11, you might be familiar with the message version of 28 through 30. It says, are you tired? Worn out, burned out on religion. Come to me, get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me.
Watch how I. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. And I just think that’s so beautiful. And, um, when we were first in ministry, [00:26:00] um, Nathan and I had the blessing of going to this free week of a pastors retreat at some mansion, and you got meals and stuff.
It’s a ministry to pastors there around the country. If you’re in ministry, look for these places and they read the scripture and we were just kind of brittle, you know, we were overworked and we were just looking for that real rest. And when they shared the scripture, it, it was so beautiful. And. I clung onto that fact of like, if we are tired and worn out, we can look towards that relationship with Jesus.
Um, but I think that I kind of hook down to the walk with me and work with me, which comes naturally for us driver, um, and have grown in relationship over the years. And I understand that it’s all about connecting with God, but God has grace and he is growing you no matter where you’re starting from whatever he’s been teaching you, he’s got new levels of teaching you that.
And I feel [00:27:00] like not until even just in the last few months where he’s kind of sharing with me how I can trust him as a good, good father. How even just like a little, let’s say a three-year-old daughter could never do anything, um, worthy of achievement or something where she’s going to get her dad’s approval.
He just loves her like crazy. And I feel like that’s what he’s kind of been showing me. And so the part where it says learn to live freely and lightly, like that is so beautiful. And we can only do that. We are relying on Jesus with that kind of, um, trust, which is really hard to do. And I think Sabbath is a trust commandment because we are either trusting in ourselves because we have to work.
We have to get it done. We have to do this. We have to do that. Or we’re trusting that God is able and he is going to do that. When you do nothing he is going to do when you do nothing. And what’s really important is what he already did. Not what we can do, not [00:28:00] anything that we could ever do in the future is going to compare with what he’s already done.
And so I think. The way to get to live freely and lightly is admit, you’re tired. Admit you’re worn out, admit you’re burned out, go to Jesus. Be like that. Three-year-old girl who just climbed up on his lap and was like, all right, what do you got for me? Carry me away. And so I think that’s just the beauty of Sabbath is, is really that key word of trust.
Rachel: It’s such a beautiful picture of the three-year old climbing on her dad’s lap and just resting in him and allowing him to just love love, on her. I think that’s beautiful.
Cristi: So beautiful. I don’t know if I answered your question.
Rachel: You did. You did. I’m like just sitting with it for a second. I just think it’s so beautiful.
So on the flip side of that, I guess I would say, what are some challenges that you’ve faced when you’ve practiced Sabbath?
Cristi: We don’t always do it. We have our [00:29:00] days where, like you said, something comes up, whether it’s like a community work day or, you know, and I think the rhythms of grace is huge. Like it is full of grace.
That is what Jesus brought. And so give it your best, try, you know, like go for it. But when you mess up, do not give up, like, don’t let it be like, well, that didn’t work. Try and try and try until you figure out what will work for you, grace for yourself, just like he has grace for you. So, yeah, we haven’t done it perfect. Um, I’m just thinking, like, I’m sure there’s been times where I’ve cleaned the house or, you know, like I’ve broken my own rules because I cannot handle whatever the mess is, you know?
Rachel: You just reminded me of that. I sometimes struggle with that. Uh, oh, I can rest better if I get this done first and I have to remind myself, like, that’s not really what it’s about. It’s not about like, making everything perfect so you can sit there and rest, it’s not a [00:30:00] reward for getting your to-do list. It’s a, in spite of, in spite of the dishes being dirty in spite of the list not being done, I get to rest.
And I think that’s kind of counterintuitive when we’ve been raised in a culture that, and I think there’s wisdom in like work first, then play like, get your stuff done, and then you can go play. So it’s kind of tentative perhaps to like go, okay, no, the work’s not all done, but that’s okay. I’m still going to rest.
Cristi: The work is never done. If you have a house, you know, that the work is never done. There’s always a project that you could do on a Sunday afternoon, you know, like, oh my goodness story.
Rachel: I’m literally looking at my door in my husband needs to still trim it out. And it’s been like that for a little bit. I’m not calling you out, honey. I promise. It’s just it’s. It is what it is. Like there’s always a project to be done. Right? There’s always maintenance on your home. There’s always the to-do list. There’s always the, you know, things you’ve got to get done in order to, [00:31:00] and so it, it, it’s never done. God’s calling you to not even calling you, but inviting you into resting with him.
In spite of all that, to remind you of his provision, what he’s already done for you to remind you that he loves you and he wants to be with you because we can get in the busy-ness of everything. We can lose sight of the fact that he wants to commune with us, that he wants to be with us, that he delights in us. Like we forget that.
Cristi: One thing, um, I do let myself do, is I love to be creative and I love to paint and I love to just make things. And oftentimes I don’t have time to do that. And so sometimes on a Sunday afternoon, the kids might be playing video games or something, and I’ll be like, I think I’m going to go paint and I know you could consider that productive, but that really fills my soul.
And it’s a time that I wouldn’t take if I was busy doing something and accomplishing something else. And those times are just so [00:32:00] beautiful. Um, you know, I said, I’m an introvert just to spend time in my craft room and, and make something. And so I think freeing up that time, um, invites other beautiful things into your life that we often don’t make the time for, or even have a moment to crave because we’re getting so busy, we’re doing, doing, doing, like, if I’m busy and I’m doing, doing, and checking things off, I’m not thinking maybe I’ll go make some art, you know, but on a Sunday when the house is quiet, I’m like, what do I really want to do?
And a huge thing for women is we don’t often think about what do we really value? What do we really think is really important. And are we living by those priorities and it gives you space to consider what do you value and to spend time on some of the things that really matter to you that you’ve been putting to the back burner for too long.
Rachel: So good. So wise. I, [00:33:00] I resonate with everything you said. I think it’s really easy for us as moms, especially when we are. When I think moms have ever aged, but especially when you have younger kids at home, you’re just so focused on making sure that they’re taken care of making sure that they are being, um, not just their physical needs are being met, but their emotional and their spiritual and you know, for their spouses too, or if you’re, you know, if you’re working mom and you’re the bringing in money to the home and you’re worried about provision. And, and I think that sometimes we can lose sight of that. What are the things that I just enjoy? What are the things that. Like truly just get a kick out of what, how do I play?
And so, you know, you talked about like, well, you could look at art as being productive, but really it’s your way of playing. Right. And you going back to that picture, the three-year-old girl. And, [00:34:00] um, and just getting the chance to climb up in her, her dad’s lap and ask like, let’s play, you know that how many times do our kids come up to me and say, mommy, can you play with me?
Let’s do that with God. And he’s saying, yes, let’s go. Let’s make art. Let’s, you know, take a walk, let’s listen to music together. Let’s be together and enjoy our time together. And so. I love what you said about that. Cause I think so many times we forget that we’re uniquely designed to worship God. And that means even though things like making art that’s worship, that’s, that’s restful for some of us and we need to lean into that wiring of our personalities.
Do you have any suggestions for moms for when it comes to practicing Sabbath?
Cristi: I was just thinking when you were talking that it also provides moms, the guilt free [00:35:00] permission to play to do nothing with their kids, to sit with them, to say, what do you want to do? To take a walk where they get to look at everything they want to look at on the way.
It benefits your relationship with God, but it benefits that relationship with yourself. It benefits the relationship with your family because you’re able to take more time with them. And so I would just encourage you to take, take this time, play with it. Like you use the word you used, practice it, see what works for you guys.
And I just couldn’t help thinking, you know, my kids, like I said, they are 14 and 18. What if I would have done this when they were littler and how would that have impacted their lives? And so just to think, like, even if it’s hard for you to consider doing it for your own self, for your own blessings, for all the benefits we’ve talked.
Consider the benefit that you’re giving to your kids by teaching them how to keep the Sabbath holy and whatever way you guys [00:36:00] can do that. Um, I just trust that they’re going to have a better grasp on the grace of God. The love of God. It’s not all about showing up and doing and working, especially if you’re a woman in ministry.
I mean, my family works as hard as we do, you know, they’re they each are in their forms of ministry. What if it’s just all about that for them? It’s all about do this, do this, do this. No. God is talking about the rhythms of grace. He wants to meet us in relationship and he can do that when we give him that Sabbath day, especially as a family.
And, um, so I just encourage you to look at the joy set before you, because it might seem hard right now, but it is going to be so worth it. If you’ll figure out how to keep that Sabbath holy in whatever way you can do.
Rachel: I liked what you mentioned there about, um, that oftentimes when we’re involved in ministry, it kind of extends to our whole family. I think that’s a [00:37:00] really good thing to point out because when, when you do Sabbath, you kind of create the little block of time where your whole family knows nothing’s demanded of them either. And that’s, that is very good. It, it, it allows the whole family to rest in ways that they need to. And it also allows you guys to reconnect with each other when when we’re involved in things that are often outwardly focused, you know, focused on other people on helping them it’s so often we hear it, right? Like the whole idea of like, oh my mom and dad were so busy helping other people. They didn’t have enough time for me. Right. And I think Sabbath is one of those ways to protect that and not allow that to happen.
And obviously you need to pour into your kids and make them a priority, but Sabbath gives you a weekly touchpoint that allows you to say, okay, yes, we as a family serve other people, but in this space and this time we’re going to reconnect to one another. And in that space and time, our family’s most important and our resting [00:38:00] with God.
So, well, this has been a wonderful conversation. I could just keep going on and talking more and more to you about things. And how about your Sabbath practice. Um, Just thank you so much for coming on and just being so open with us and being so vulnerable and sharing the ways in which you have, um, learned and grown in this practice of Sabbath.
And so, but before we go. And two things. One, I would like you to tell us a little bit about the resource you have for women who are looking to figure out their next steps in life. You know, you have something for them
Cristi: And this, I mean, you could think about this you’re maybe right now you’re having a desire. Like I want to do Sabbath. I don’t know, how am I going to do it? How could I possibly do it? Um, I have a resource that can be used for any woman who’s looking for next steps. So even though I created it thinking about [00:39:00] like, what am I supposed to do with my life? You know, what am I going to be when I grow up, what am I going to do?
It’s really a decision worksheet that will help you to make a wise decision, um, with the help of God and with the help of considerations of things that you haven’t maybe given yourself time to think about before and it’s can be found at alteredstory.com and you can go there and get it. It’s just a free PDF worksheet, but it will help you figure out your next step.
I promise you, and if you have any trouble with it, let me know, but I would encourage you. What is your next step moving towards Sabbath. Like you’re not going to be perfect tomorrow maybe, but what could be that next step you take that is going to get you to a place where you’re able to keep the Sabbath day holy in a way that you feel so good about like, I am actually obeying this top 10 commandment, you know, like, why do we discount it?
It’s not murder. It doesn’t seem to have the same consequences. [00:40:00] But what you’re missing out on when you’re not doing it as all the benefits and the rewards, I think. And so I just encourage you. If you need a little extra help to get there, this is one resource you can use for any question, bring to the table and say, what am I supposed to do next?
This will help you at alteredstory.com. You can find that.
Rachel: So go check it out. I’ll put the link in the show notes too. Um, but definitely go check out that resource that Kristi has for us. Christie, can I close our time together in prayer?
Cristi: I would love that. Thank you so much.
Rachel: Lord Jesus, thank you so much for Christie and her husband and her family and the work that they’re doing in the ministries that they’re involved in with their church and Lord, we know how it is a lot of work being a ministry. It’s a lot of work following that calling that you play on people’s lives to serve others in that capacity to help them experience God in a real way. It’s it takes effort. It takes intentionality. And Lord, we just [00:41:00] thank you for Christie and her family. And for all those listeners out there who are involved in ministry in whatever capacity, if they’re on staff or if they’re volunteer, Lord, they help, they help us engage with you in a deeper way through the work that they’re doing. Lord, I pray for our listeners today who are involved in ministry, who are feeling like I can’t catch a break. I’m doing my thing during the week. And then on the weekends, my weekends are not my own Lord. I just pray for those individuals. I pray for those mamas who can’t figure out how to balance all the things she needs to get done and the way that she needs to serve and take a rest. Lord I pray this week that you would give her clarity and wisdom and knowing where she might be able to fit rest in into her week. I pray that you would encourage her and, and give her, um, a desire and renewed passion to pursue a time to play with you in ways that are, [00:42:00] um, refueling to her soul.
Lord, I pray that she would draw near to you this week. That she would seek out that time to crawl into your lap and just be held by you Lord. I just pray that you would just continue to bring moments into her life where she sees that you are providing for her and that she can learn to trust you even more.
And Lord. Thank you once again for Christie and her heart and the way that she wants to encourage women to live their lives out for you to live their lives out and to the things that you’ve called them to do. And Lord, I ask that you bless her and that you bless every listener listening to this episode today in your precious and holy name I pray. Amen.
Thank you again, Christie, for being on today’s episode. And, um, I just, I really enjoy [00:43:00] talking with you. I think it, I think it would be so helpful for others to hear what it’s like to Sabbath when you’re in ministry.
And I want to thank you for listening to today’s episode. We’ll meet back here next week. As we continue the conversation about how to implement a weekly rhythm of rest in your life. Bye.
Hey, I just want to say thank you for joining me for today’s conversation. I know many things demand your attention. I don’t take lightly the privilege it is to share your time. I want to make things as easy and simple for you. So I’ve linked to all the resources mentioned in the episode in the show notes, and you can always find the link and more helpful information on my website, www.simplysabbath.com.
As we say our goodbyes, let me remind you that what we’re talking about in this podcast is not just another thing to add to your to-do list. This is not another expectation for you to live up to. It is a gift out stretched from the hand of your [00:44:00] creator. An invitation to press pause on walking alongside Jesus in all the things He’s called you to do. And instead the down, across from Him and just be with Him.
It is an invitation to Simply Sabbath.
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Hey! I'm Rachel and I'm so glad you're here today!
I help busy moms add a simple, rest-filled family Sabbath to their week. If that sounds like something you want for your week, but don’t know where to start, grab this free how-to resource: The Busy Mom’s Guide to a Simple Family Sabbath.