There is a commandment in the Bible about taking a Sabbath day. It is one of the popularly named "big ten" commandments.
Sabbath is often understood/described as a day off for self care.
However, this really is not a great definition of Sabbath and leads to a twisted understanding of what Sabbath is all about.
When the focus on Sabbath is a day off for self care, then we quickly move into a egocentric religion. Sabbath becomes a time for us to renew ourselves so that we can continue to work the next day(s). Sabbath becomes something we get to do as a day of personal pampering or at the very least a day to do "whatever the heck I want to do to recharge my batteries."
As one who self admittedly is not that great at practicing Sabbath, I admit that I sometimes practice Sabbath as a day off in order to recharge my batteries. That is to say, sometimes I treat Sabbath as a "me day".
The times in which I have mistaken Sabbath as a "me day" have been the days which result in the next day being full of anxiety. When I come back from vacation (which I would contend is just a series of "me days") I come back to work with a high level of "oh man am I way behind" and take a couple of days to catch up.
Sabbath is something which does not result in the next day being full of anxiety. If we are taking day(s) off and calling it Sabbath, yet the next day is full of anxiety, then we have not taken Sabbath.
Sabbath is not that time in which we have emptied ourselves or disengaged with the world around us.
Sabbath is not the time in which we "unplug" from reality in order to escape from the woes at hand.
Sabbath is not "me time." Sabbath is "God time."
Sabbath is that time in which we dedicate an extended period of time to listening and reflecting and fully engaging the way in which God might be moving in your life. It is a time in which to reflect on what you feel God is calling you to do in this world. Sabbath is time that is centered on God and not on the me.
Interestingly enough I have found that when I take Sabbath, I am personally restored and refreshed.
When I make time to center myself upon the mysteries of the world and universe...
When I consider the struggles in my neighbors life...
When I reflect how the previous week reflected a sense of call in my life...
When I contemplate how I can use the coming week to live into a new reality...
When I take time to stop focusing on myself...
I encounter a God who provides and gives. I encounter a reality which pulls me into a tempo of life which is refreshing and restoring. When Sabbath is not about me but about God, I discover my next day is not anxiety filled.
It is in this way I encounter true Sabbath.