Labor Day

Dearly Beloved,

Grace and Peace to you.
         
         Observe the sabbath day, and keep it holy
                  —Deuteronomy 5.12

Whether in Egypt or not you remember slavery,
to be a thing, replaceable,
valued according to your output,
by how you make someone else happy.
That isn't you.
You are the blossoming of God's delight,
even in your sleep.
Once in a while, stop.
Stop doing, stop proving yourself.
Lay down your bricks.
Lay down your bales of cotton.
Stop for a moment, an hour, a day,
and the slave-master's voice rises up,
doesn't it?
Defy it.
Be satisfied for someone else
to be dissatisfied with you.
Just be, without use.
Let God do the same.
Or is God just a tool, a thing?
Learn to carry this mystery with you
in every breath:
you are who you are, not what you do.
It is good now and then to stop and be,
uselessly beloved.

 

   —September 4, 2017