Getting Sloppy With Sacred Time? [MAIN STORY]
hen we first moved to the Washington area, I remember how proud I used to be on those Friday evenings when I would hear a certain golden voice on a local Adventist radio station announcing the coming of Sabbath. It left a beautiful echo in the ears, a good taste in the mouth. And I used to think: What a powerful message for the entire capital region of the United States!
But over the years, I’ve heard statements and announcements made on Sabbath by Adventist media sources that have left me wondering whether it signals a new low in our Sabbath sensitivity. Here’s a sampling—and remember that each of these came during Sabbath hours from Adventist media:
•“This traffic report is brought to you by Blockbuster. Make this [Friday night] a Blockbuster night.”
•“The Barnum and Bailey circus is coming to town Monday. Please go to our Web site for more information.”
•[On a rainy Sabbath afternoon]: “This is great baking weather! Wish I were in my kitchen right now baking.”
•“What a beautiful day! A good time to rake the leaves and do some work around the yard. And tomorrow when you return from church. . . .”
•“Many of you may have seen the antique road show over PBS, where some people with items they thought insignificant ended up being valued at $2,000 and even more. Well, there’s an antique show going on today and tomorrow. . . . You may want to check it out. The cost is $10 an item.”
•And as the sun was setting one December Friday, the music that came on the air was “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire.”
Are we losing it? Does a desire to please and be appreciated blind us to the sacredness of the Sabbath? Is there anything we can learn from our Orthodox Jewish friends? Or are we simply not thinking?