The Lost Art
We hear the expression all the time.
We never take the time to ponder what it means.
The expression happened to be the impetus of a question.
The expression is simply, lost art.
The question was: What are some lost arts that you wish came back or never left?
The answers fascinated me.
It was as if the question was the dividing line.
You were either on one side or the other depending on what you experienced in your life.
- Recording sound with analog tape
- Taking pictures with film
- Etiquette and good manners to anyone you encounter
- Handwriting and mailing a letter
- Talking to people face to face
- Common courtesies like holding a door open for someone
- Saying hello to other people as they walk by instead of talking on the phone
- Paying attention as you drive without distractions
- Cursive writing
- Having a meal at the table with your family
- Properly spoken English without swear words, hashtags, internet lingo, or emoticons
- Saying please and thank you
- Searching for a library book using the card catalog
- Using an encyclopedia
- Using a dictionary
- Listening to 45 records on a turntable
- Driving a stick shift
- Parallel parking
- Carrying cash in your wallet
- Getting dressed up for no particular reason
- Doing nothing
The list could go on and on.
Everyone could probably add an item or two.
Even then, the list would not be complete.
I wondered if there was a definition for the expression, lost art and to my surprise, there was.
A lost art is something usually requiring some skill that not many people do any more.
A lost art is something that has fallen out of practice.
I pondered the short list that I had found.
I knew there was one thing that could easily be at the top.
Resting on Sunday is a lost art.
Taking Sunday off is a lost art.
Going on a Sunday drive is a lost art.
Visiting family on a Sunday is a lost art.
The common theme as I pondered was, Sunday.
The danger of discussing what can and cannot be done on a Sunday is that it can be legalistic.
One has to be able to think of Sunday without a checklist and clip board in hand.
One has to be able to think of Sunday as a joyful day in order to rejuvenate.
One has to think of Sunday as a day of rest that God instituted.
Remember driving to Grandma’s house?
Remember having company over for dinner?
Remember taking a walk with no particular destination?
Remember talking to your neighbors?
Remember throwing a baseball in the front yard?
Remember playing outside after dinner until the street lights came on?
Remember how everything was closed on Sunday?
Everyone knew that Sunday was coming.
It was not a day to catch up and finish all the things you did not get done during the week.
It was a day to rest, to be restored, and to be together.
It was a day to enjoy.
You went to church on Sunday morning.
You wore clothes that were your Sunday best.
You came home and changed clothes.
You did not change your clothes if you were having company or were visiting someone.
Sunday was a day off in every sense of the word.
Sunday was different.
Sunday did not have the same old routine.
Sunday was not an ordinary day.
Sunday was a day set apart.
In God’s Word, to be set apart is to be holy.
Sunday was to be set apart.
Sunday is holy.
Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. (Exodus 20:8-10)
The Jewish nation celebrated the Sabbath on Saturday.
After Jesus rose from the dead, the Sabbath day became Sunday.
God says the Sabbath is holy.
We tend to treat Sunday like an ordinary day.
Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. (Mark 2:27)
God instituted a Sabbath day for us.
God did not need to rest but God knew that we did.
We need to stop, and breathe, and be still.
We need to take the time to enjoy a day that God set aside for us.
I pass by a picture in my laundry room every day.
I see it as I go out to the garage to get in my car.
I found the picture in the place of Amish buggies.
It is very simple but very special to me.
It simply says: Working Day Is Done.
It is a picture of four Amish straw hats hanging on shaker pegs.
I heard once that the essence of profundity is simplicity.
That statement is never more true than when I look at that picture.
The lost art of Sunday.
Sunday is simply hanging up your hat.
Working day is done and the day is holy.