Sunday, November 1, 2009

I Blew It On Shabbat (our day of renewal)

Even rabbis make mistakes -- probably because we are members of the human race. And yesterday I made a mistake, which hopefully will turn out to be an opportunity of learning.

I do use my electronics on Shabbat. If I were Shabbat Shomar (guarding the sabbath) I would not; I also drive on Shabbat. But I truly like to use the day as a day of rest and renewal of the spirit. If I use my electronics, I read books (Kindle), study, listen to music, catch up with friends and family.

But yesterday, I opened an email that was about business and it was an unpleasant email. So first, I allowed it to trouble me. Then, to make matters worse, I shared my discontent with two special friends -- ahhhh -- so not only did I trash my morning of shalom, I trashed the morning of two friends. Give me bad Jewish points and bad rabbi points for this one.

I took a walk and spent some time in nature and with the pups to reel myself back into to the spirit of renewal and renourishment. But I also made a promise to myself:
No work on Shabbat. (Obviously as a rabbi and a chaplain -- if I am called to minister to someone on Shabbat, I will, but that is in the mitzvah category, not the work category.
And I promise that if I slip up -- I will duct tape myself to prevent me from spreading the discontent.

Shabbat is such a treasure. A gift of time, a gift of the spirit. Time when we turn off the demands of the world and refresh ourselves with reflective time, time with family and friends, time in nature, time with our nose in a book, time snuggling with beloveds of two or four legged varieties.

Today, since we got to "fall back with fall" - I (as most of America) was given that extra hour of day. Maybe it was my salve to say "sorry you blew Shabbat morning, here is a little gift to show that there were no hard feelings.....a gift of time."

And I am actually in Shabbat mode even today -- it is delicious and yummy.

Go forth with renewed spirits and shalom

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