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Sabbath in the Midst of Thinking and Doing

Let me just set something straight. Kinesthetic does not mean kinetic.

Kinetic means constantly in motion. Something like an electron orbiting a nucleus or ants on an ant hill or small children on a playground. I find great joy in all those images, but that is not how I experience the Christian life. It is how, on some days, life feels imposed on me. But I extract myself from those situations as quickly as I can. I don’t like crowds or pushing or hurry.

I do however like motion. At my own pace. Give and take. Motion I consider and then take action on. Decided motion. This is how I experience kinesthesis in my life and in my faith. Call me cautious or shy or deliberate. You wouldn’t say I’m stalled; I am a do-er. But don’t call me impulsive; I’m a thinker. Ha! I guess you could call me maybe. 🙂 Thanks Carly Rae Jepsen. I like living in the state of maybe. Readying for what’s next. Attending to the now in anticipation of the what’s next.

I am sometimes guilty of doing a bit too much preparing. Digging in with my head down with no intention of moving on until I’m sure I have everything just so. And on impulse, I have made a snap decision to two. Not quite sure which is the right way, but doggonit, someone has to do something so let’s just do it.

But on my best days I am the middle voice – think/do, ponder/do, research/do, pray/do – in each thing I do. And honestly, you can take that forward-slash out of each of those. I’m not aware of a particular moment where I move from ‘now I’m thinking’ to ‘now I’m doing,’ it’s more of a swaying. More like a jumping-the-waves feeling. Forward and back. In and out.

This seems to be part of my created nature, this operating from the middle ground. I find myself in the middle on lots of things. the moderator. the facilitator. the…peace-maker. And frankly, that middle place is often not that comfortable. You’ve got things, or people, bearing down on you from both sides. Threatening to crush you or perhaps trying to tear you limb from limb to get at the ones on the other side. But, from where I stand I can see something to love about both sides. I truly want them to hear each other and to see each other’s hearts. Perhaps if they’ll come close enough to me, the other will overhear.

For years I complained about being caught in the middle – all that crushing and wrenching. Until God changed just one word. “Wendy, you’re not caught in the middle, you’re placed in the middle.” And everything changed. If I was placed here, then I must have the resources to operate here. The waffling and uncertainty were all part of the territory. They were a package deal with the ‘hear everyone out.’

It does get exhausting. But it’s not my way to retreat to rejuvenate and then re-enter the fray. I can’t sit behind my dais to hear both sides and then retire to my chambers to make a firm and final decision. I need to be in the thick of it. So where does one find Sabbath?

I read today, Sabbath is not just a rest from work,

“Sabbath is also an experience of rest in the midst of work, contemplation in the midst of action, and receptivity in the midst of giving and serving.” ~ Kenneth H Carter, Jr.

It’s intended for us in the middle of things. Available to us in the midst. All I need to do is to remember to call on it then. Perhaps it’s the forward-slash I can’t quite describe – which seems to separate mind from body yet animates my transition from one to the other and back again.

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