Monday Over Coffee: "Thrum & Scrum"

Published May 15, 2023 by Greg Funderburk

While we're commanded to set aside a particular day—the Sabbath—to rest just as God did following God's own work of creation, it's interesting God doesn't give us any further specific instructions to follow with respect to any other day of the week. We're certainly encouraged to pray every day, to follow high ethical standards, and to take up a host of religious disciplines and spiritual practices, but again, it's a little curious that God doesn't offer us any detailed suggestion or guidance for accessing God's own presence on Monday, or Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, or even Saturday. 

Or does He?

Perhaps if we want to commune with God more closely within the thrumming pulse of our work week, if we want to detect God more fully in the midst of the scrum of our weekly trials and challenges, we might take a deeper look into the very same Creation narrative that offers us the Sabbath. What I'm suggesting is that by tracking and, in a sense, emulating God's activity on each day of that first week, we might more reliably find God in the midst of the thrum and scrum of our busy weeks and more closely align ourselves with God's purposes for each day. Let's play this out a little. 

On the first day—the day we think of as Monday—God said, "Let there be light," and light appeared. What if this illuminating activity suggests a thematic routine we might follow as we start our own week? What if, each Monday, we took up this notion of deliberately casting a ray of light out into the world, participating in the work that light represents: offering hope, joy, understanding, brightness, optimism, a cleansing presence to an often dark and shadowy world? Might such a practice not only connect us with God but to God's first-day-of-the-week purposes?

On the second day, we're told God separated the sky from the chaos of the sea. What if just as God did, we used our Tuesdays for industry that tends to bring order to the existing chaos of our world? What if on the second day of our work week, we looked for opportunities where things are disordered and tried to clean and clear them up? What if we focused on this sort of thing each Tuesday, joining with God in the sacred nature of this holy second-day work?

On the third day, God separated the land and sea and created the grass, plants, and all that grow in and on the earth. What if we took up this notion of growth on Wednesdays, examining our lives more closely for areas of good growth, which we know God wants to nurture within us? Perhaps this is where we might find what God is up to—the work of cultivating what is good and growing—right there in the middle of our week.

On the fourth day, we're told God made the sun, moon, and stars. What if each Thursday, we simply made time for awe? Perhaps we'd be more likely to encounter God if we placed ourselves somehow, in some way, each Thursday, in the midst of God's awe-inspiring fourth-day creative work.

On the fifth day, God created the animals. All the animals. What if we used our Fridays to exercise our imagination, as God did in creating all these incredible creatures on land, in the air, and under the sea, with whom we share this world. This was God's fifth-day work. It should be ours too if we wish to more closely connect with the divine near the end of a busy week. Use your imagination! Fridays are for creating something beautiful.

On the sixth day, God created us. God made human beings. What if, just as God did, we very intentionally each Saturday aimed to create community with our spouses, friends, partners, children, siblings, and neighbors? This was God's sixth-day work. Maybe it should be ours too. Saturday: banish loneliness.

This is all to say that we might consider adopting what could be called a "Genesis 1" rhythm for each week: Monday, throw a little more light into the world. Tuesday, work on bringing some order from the chaos around you. Wednesday, examine your circumstances and lean into where you sense God wants you to grow. Thursday, seek out an experience of awe. Friday, commit to using your imagination for God's purposes. And Saturday—Saturday, build some community. If we did all this, perhaps the ordinary thrum of our days wouldn't feel so ordinary and the troublesome weekly scrums in which we so often find ourselves wouldn't feel quite so troubling.

God — Through thrum and scrum, may my days reflect Your holy, creative work. Amen.

— Greg Funderburk