59 Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 60 and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. Matthew 27:59-60 NIV
John calls this man Joseph of Arimathea who was a secret disciple of Jesus. He was a rich man who was able to ask Pilate for permission to bury Jesus’ body. Pilate ordered that Jesus’ body be given to Joseph. John also records that Nicodemus joined him in the moving and preparation of the body for burial. Notice the last two words after the body was placed in the tomb and the stone was put into place, they went away.
All the disciples had to experience the Sabbath while Jesus was in the tomb. No work was to be performed on the Sabbath. No preparing the fields for more harvest. Limited travel was expected. You were to stay home, rest and honor God. It was time to think about what’s really important and how your actions are in alignment with those values. This experience occurred every week. But this week was different, Jesus had died. They had moved away from what was normal for them.
This COVID19 pandemic has crossed over the Easter weekend. Countries have ordered families to stay-at-home. Rest has been ordered. The disciples did not know how long Jesus was going to be gone, even though He had told them He would arise in 3 days. From their perspective, this could have gone on indefinitely. For now, they had to observe the Sabbath. Like the disciples we do not know how long this will last. For now, we have been ordered to rest.
What’s really important. During the break that is mandatory by our government, take some time to observe a extended Sabbath’s rest. Think about what is really important and how do your actions align with those values?
Your family relationships – Do you need to forgive someone? Now would be a good time. Do you need to communicate more often? What does quality time look like with your spouse or child? Having to live closely live with your family can reveal a lot about “preferring one another as more important than yourself.”
Your money management – Are you still giving? What treasures are you storing up in heaven as compared to piling up things here on earth? Will you spend in the same manner after the break? What lessons have you learned about debt? Have you learned to trust God for provisions of daily bread?
Your relationship with God – What does honoring Him with your time look like for you? Did you increase your Bible reading time or time spent in praying? How do you incorporate worship of God so that it truly is the number one passion in your life? This is a great season to share with others about how to start a relationship with God, who is on your radar?
After burying Jesus, Joseph went away and observed the Sabbath. What are you learning during your “went away” time? Will you make any lifetime adjustments? May you be blessed with good choices during your Sabbath rests that include brokenness, humility, adjustments, laughter, hope and joy.
Blessings Love y’all