Sunday School at Caputo’s

Keeping the Sabbath Day holy. 

Doesn’t that just sound old-fashioned…more like ancient?

It is.  But…it’s awesome.  

I had to show these photos… Here we are in downtown Boston on the very first Sunday that Danny & I went to church together (and it was the day after our very first kiss!)  I love how blissful we look.  We couldn’t stop smiling for days. 

There was no other place I wanted to be than at church with Danny.  It was just so nice to be with someone who desired the same, uplifting things I did.  Sadly, observing the Sabbath Day was actually not always something I cared about…oh boy…
Before I realized how great it could be to reserve a day to focus on spiritual things, I wouldn’t hesitate to go to brunch, run to the store, or even go to Costco (haha) after church or the Red Hook Ball Fields for some South American street fare, one of the best meals that a Brooklyn summer has to offer.   Who wouldn’t want to get a tan & Nathan’s Hotdogs at Coney Island on a Sunday afternoon?  I also would sneak out of Sunday School all the time to get some of those chocolate dipped shortbread cookies at Caputo’s Bakery or cookies at Monteleone’s (thanks to Sunday School, I got to know all the Italian bakeries surrounding our church quite well.)  And if the NYC Marathon was happening, which meant traffic was a little thick, I would jump at the opportunity to not go to church at all…It was time for brunch!  It’s sad to me that I would jump at the opportunity to ditch out on spiritually uplifting things and really didn’t care.

But now that I have a strong desire to do all that I can to stay on track spiritually, I looove reserving a whole day to focus on that.  

One day a week (I choose Sunday), I try to give up anything that would distract me from that purpose.  We’re talking no shopping.  No hard core recreational activities.  No business or work activities.  It’s not that these things are bad, but if I choose to not do them, it forces me to focus on time with family, cooking at home, talks and walks with my dear husband, meditating, Sunday dinner with friends, focusing on becoming a better woman, a better wife, preparing to become a mother, reading, listening to uplifting music, staying in touch with family, serving someone in need, visiting those who might need to be uplifted, preparing for a new week.  (And let’s be honest, also taking a nap, ideally on my husband’s chest. 🙂

This day of focus & rest makes a HUGE, HUGE difference in my life and I get to start a new week feeling so dang renewed & having a greater strength to face my trials.  And trust me, I’ve learned that having that strength stored up makes all the difference in the world.  I’ve needed it, at times.  Even when things are running smoothly, I like having that strength ready for the next rainy day.  So, dear readers – even the ones who are not religious – I highly, highly recommend reserving one day a week to become spiritually enlightened in some way.  You’ll love it!  And your life will feel more balanced & full of more peace & freedom.



P.S.  I have a busy weekend ahead, so I’ll see you back here on Monday.  Looking forward to it!!  You can be sure I’ll be thinking about you.  Until then, here is a yummy banana soft serve that I’ll be making for friends on Sunday.  I’ll be topping it with toasted nuts & coconut and a bit of chocolate sauce (agave mixed with cocoa & maybe some cinnamon).  EASY & DELICIOUS!

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  1. This girl loves to talk November 4, 2011 at 8:55 am - Reply

    I wrote something similar a while back

    though I've never broken the sabbath in ways you mentioned (sometimes I think LDS are way more strict in Australia when I read some american blogs 😉 I realised that why is the EASIEST commandment to keep sometimes the hardest???

    some of what I thought….

    It is an important commandment and one that is fairly enjoyable with lots of rewards so why should I have a problem? In actuality I LOVE keeping the sabbath day holy. Oh the blessed relief when you know you cannot school study (when I was a student), shop, sports or do frivolous things on a sunday. It truly is a day of rest for ones mind, body and bank account 🙂 Several scriptures mention the blessings of the earth being yours, peace, rain in due season, fruit of the earth, to dwell in safety, become unspotted from the world, to rid of selfishness – There is alot riding on having respect for the sabbath for not only as an individual but as a community too.

  2. Leslie November 4, 2011 at 2:15 pm - Reply

    Thanks for your candid post Mara. I'm a huge fan of this blog and of your honest sincerity. Love this.

    I mostly wanted to respond to the Australian Mormon who thinks us US mormons don't keep the sabbath day because of a few blogs she's read. (And I have a feeling I know which blogs you read.) Please don't judge all of us based on those few people. There are LOTS of us Mormons who try to keep the sabbath day and who find it increasingly hard to do in this society. I have no comment on those Mormons who flaunt NOT keeping the sabbath day. Just please don't think that we are all like that.

  3. Anonymous November 4, 2011 at 4:56 pm - Reply

    I'm curious to know how long you two dated before getting married and also how long you have been married.

    Love reading your blog!

  4. Kelli Trounce November 4, 2011 at 11:44 pm - Reply

    Nothing quite like a day of rest. Although, serving in the church doesn't always mean a restful day especially when taking care of a family too. It is however, my favorite day of the week. Because even though I am busy, I am busy with things that matter most. I need that "rest" from my every other daily cares. I especially need the focus and recommitment of following my Savior, Jesus Christ.

  5. This Girl loves to Talk November 5, 2011 at 1:17 am - Reply

    thats exactly what I blogged about too.. how being at home with small kids it is FAR from a day of rest and often feels.. just like every day…

    and I totally know there are many LDS who keep the sabbath day holy. I think we were lucky in australia as most places were not open on sundays till recently (I mean the last 5-7 years now everything is open on sundays but when I was growing up etc nothing was open that in my mind I still think its easy to not shop etc on sundays) I really didnt mean it in a bad judgemental way – though I'm sure it sounded that way.. we all have our journeys to take and our commitment to the Lord to show.. we're all on different learning tracks, and what is easy for some is not for others and we all have our temptations.

  6. Ashley November 6, 2011 at 7:06 am - Reply

    I found your blog recently and love it. I agree, having a day of rest on Sunday really make a difference in my week. I didn't do homework on Sundays through my Bachelor and Masters degrees and I really felt that making that decision brought many blessings and helped me make it through those busy weeks. Thanks for your testimony in this post.

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