The disciples said, “Lord, if he is sleeping, he will soon get better!”” – John 11:12.
Sleep is essential to life, yet most people think that life is too short to sleep all the time. But life is also too short not to sleep a large part of the time. The fact is, we need sleep but in many cases are not getting it. Last year, the Centers for Disease Control declared sleep deprivation a public health problem, with 30 percent of adults getting fewer than six hours of sleep a night. Yet God created you and me to require sleep for a healthy life.
In fact, we need sleep to survive. We all know that going without ample sleep has drastic effects on us physically and emotionally. There are many different reasons you might notice that you aren’t able to doze off to dream land. All of us wake up at times during the night, and the first thing that pops into our heads is a big problem we’re worried about. The best thing you can do is stop yourself from going there and redirect your thoughts to something less stressful. If you get caught up on the worry treadmill, you’ll stay awake much longer.
Even as Americans trade sleep for other needs, researchers have discovered more than ever about the significance of sleep. Their findings agree with the age-old adage of the psalmist: “It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones.” (Psalm 127:2)
Beneath a God who never slumbers, sleep is a great gift that points to a God who meets our needs and cares for us. God made sleep as a continual reminder that we should not be anxious but should rest in him. Psalm 3:5-6 says, “I lay down and slept, yet I woke up in safety, for the Lord was watching over me. I am not afraid of ten thousand enemies who surround me on every side.”Then we read in Psalm 4:8, “In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe.”
Commit to improving your sleep as you work through these this week. Realize that God created you as a whole person—spirit, soul and body. Those three areas affect each other. So as you are strengthening your spirit, strengthen your mind and body with better sleep. This will, in turn, strengthen your spirit and help you be the you that you want to be in five years.
- How important is sleep to you? What is preventing you from sleeping well?
- What can we do this week to put away our concerns and trust in God?