A simple Sabbath ritual


Would you like a way to mark you Sabbath, to make it different from the other days of the week?

In our home, we mark it with a weekly Shabbat meal, a simple ritual we do together as we begin our Friday evening meal (which is always roast chicken!!). You can find out more about it here, and even download the little service sheet we use here.

Shabbat is traditionally celebrated with the evening meal, because in Judaism, days begin in the evening, not the morning, because in Genesis 1 it says:

“And there was evening, and there was morning – the first day.” (Genesis 1:4 NIV-UK)

I also find, if we do our evenings ‘right’, our morning follows on well. It’s a bit like, if you are relaxed before you go to sleep, you sleep better and wake refreshed. If you are fretting before bed, this might not be the case. Also, a bit like making lunch or laying out your clothes the night before – it all helps to make the day smoother, doesn’t it?

If you are looking for something SUPER simple to use to mark the beginning of your day of rest (at a day and time of your choice!) I’ve written this for you (get a Printable version here):

Simple Words for Sabbath

As you start your meal say:
This meal marks the beginning of our day of rest.
Light two candles and say:
As we light these candles, we welcome God’s presence in our home.
Thank you, God, for Jesus, the light of the world.
As we wash our hands, we say sorry to God and to each other.
Thank you, God, that You forgive us and wash our hearts clean.
Take it in turns to gently wash your hands in a bowl of water and dry them on a towel. You might want to say sorry to each other for specific things.
As we break this bread, we remember Jesus and His body broken for us.
Thank you, God, for Jesus, our bread of life.
Pass around some bread, letting everyone eat a piece. 
As we drink this juice/wine, we remember Jesus’ blood shed for us.
Thank you, God, for making a way for us to have life in all its fulness.
Pass around some juice or wine letting everyone take a sip.
Say this blessing from Numbers 6:24-26 from The Message.
You might want to learn it off by heart so you can say it to each other.
God bless you and keep you,
God smile on you and gift you,
God look you full in the face
    and make you prosper.
Finish with the traditional Shabbat blessing, which roughly translated means ‘A peace-filled Sababath!’:
Shabbat Shalom!

Get a Printable version here