I have been having a lot of trouble recently in keeping the sabbath day reserved for Christ. It’s not a problem when I’m alone, however when we have people over it’s really hard to keep the right mind set. Sometimes my friends do things that I wouldn’t consider Sunday appropriate (and I respect that they might think it is), I want to keep Sunday’s holy, however I don’t want to seem self righteous or offend anyone by trying to be a bit more reverent on the Lord’s day. What should I do?
Your question is a wonderful one, and it brings up several topics. From the tone it’s clear that you are a very grounded and spiritual young person, on the right track and very caring. You clearly want to keep the sabbath holy and be a good influence for your friends-both of those attributes are wonderful and you are to be commended for them. Also, you mentioned that you don’t want to appear self righteous or offend others in your personal search on how to keep the Sabbath holy. Katana, we at Ask Gramps are very proud of you.
Few things in life are as valuable as having good friends. Frankly, I wish more people understood this. Often times I hear of people discarding friendships over a difference in viewpoints and values, and it deeply saddens me. Friendship is something incredibly valuable in life and when we find ourselves blessed enough to consider someone a good friend, we should feel very grateful. I don’t know how old you are Katana, but as you get older it sometimes becomes harder to find good friends, so you are absolutely correct that you shouldn’t try to offend anyone or push them away. However, you are also correct the Sabbath is a day of holiness and our activities should be pleasing to our Heavenly Father, especially on His day.
I’d like to remind you that even people who share the same basic views and values will not agree on everything, including what activities to do on the Sabbath. It’s very impractical to demand that everyone agree with you one hundred percent of the time, and it is setting you up for constant disappointment and rejection. Like it or not, sometimes even people we have deep relationships with will occasionally do something we don’t agree with. It’s best to keep the friendship alive even if the other person might make choices we don’t agree with. Now, common sense is still needed of course. You don’t want to be friends with someone who is robbing convenience stores on Sunday or on Thursday.
Perhaps a friend will want to do something on the Sabbath that we are not comfortable with, and the best way to not partake in that activity is just to offer a polite and friendly “No thank you” with no further explanation, then think of something else the group can do together. Most times, group of friends will agree to do something that everyone is comfortable with. Usually there is no need to bring up an explanation, a simple “No thank you” does enough.
Katana like I mentioned above, you seem like a wonderful young person who cares deeply about both their friends and the Sabbath day. I’m very confident that you are doing the right thing and will continue to do so.