Season 17: Episode 7 | Sabbath Rhythms During Seasons of Singleness and Care-giving

In this episode we continue discussing how each season or stage of life presents its own challenges and opportunities with regard to sabbath keeping. Today we’re joined by two guests, Phaedra Blocker and Vicki Degner.

In the first half Phaedra and Ruth talk about sabbath keeping in seasons of singleness. Phaedra shares the ways in which the church can often fail to support single people in the practice, and what she does to make the day feel special and set apart. She also shares her own perspective on the notion that the sabbath is a privileged concept.

Then we hear from Vicki, who shares about her experience with sabbath during seasons of intense caregiving. Vicki has an adult son with special needs as well as two aging parents and she and Ruth discuss very practical ways in which they still strive to keep sabbath during this difficult season.

Dr. Phaedra D. BlockerRev. Dr. Phaedra D. Blocker is a preacher, teacher, singer, spiritual director, and consultant. Founder and principal of Word & Wisdom, she is dedicated to empowering individuals and organizations to move toward wholeness and actualize their potential as agents of change and shalom in the world. She serves as Director of the Center for Community Care, Formation & Vitality at Palmer Theological Seminary of Eastern University and is Affiliate Professor in Leadership & Formation.

Vicki DegreeVicki Denger is trained and certified through Christos Center for Spiritual Formation as a spiritual director, and has been practicing for 18 years. She serves the Transforming Center as the Coordinator of Spiritual Direction Ministries and also on the TC board. She is married to Gerry, has two adult children, and two grandchildren that are the light of her life.


You can also access podcast on Stitcher and Spotify.

Listen to other episodes from Season 17 Access past podcast seasons

Purchase Ruth’s new book! Embracing Rhythms of Work and Rest comes out on October 11, 2022. It is out now, wherever you buy books (Amazon | Barnes and Noble |

You can also pre-order the Sabbath Journal, which will be available sometime in January 2023.

This season of our podcast is sponsored by GoodKind. GoodKind is all about helping people cultivate the GoodKind of habits and holiday practices that allow them to engage with God and one another throughout the year. They have a great tool for Advent, a Sabbath Box to help you practice unplugging, and more. To learn more about them and the products they make, you can find them at 

Music Credit:
Kingdom Come by Aaron Niequist
Reflection from Transforming Center Resource Music in Solitude

Support the podcast! This season, patrons will receive an overflow of bonus content from the episodes, including exclusive conversations between Ruth and guests, clips that we couldn’t fit into the final cuts, and more! Become a patron today by visiting our Patreon page!

The Transforming Center exists to create space for God to strengthen leaders and transform communities. You are invited to join our next Transforming Community:® A Two-year Spiritual Formation Experience for Leaders.  Delivered in nine quarterly retreats, this practice-based learning opportunity is grounded in the conviction that the best thing you bring to leadership is your own transforming self!

Transforming Center

We desire to see churches and Christian organizations become communities of authentic spiritual transformation – and that begins with transforming leaders. We seek to strengthen the souls of pastors and leaders, equipping them to guide their churches and organizations to become spiritually transforming communities that discern and do the will of God in their settings. Read more about the Transforming Center.
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Join thousands of pastors and spiritual leaders

Receive Beyond Words®, reflections on the soul of leadership. Written by Ruth Haley Barton, each reflection provides spiritual guidance and encouragement for those seeking to be in God for the world.