February 24, 2015
“It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know he enjoys giving rest to those he loves?” Psalm 127:2 MSG
It’s not just moms who struggle with 60 + hour week loads. Writers, ministry leaders, business professionals, retail workers, yes, even some seniors juggle packed schedules. Most of us have been there at one time or another. “Hurry up!” flies out of our mouths more times than we care to admit.
Technical advances intended to decrease our work load and increase our efficiency only offer more gadgets to consume our time and energy. All our efforts to slow down seem hopeless at times.
How do you ease the pattern of too much pursuing and too much doing? How do you remedy the pattern of too little resting and too little nesting? Even at night our sleep-deprived bodies may fight the tendency to “work,” as we count undone tasks rather than sheep. Does God offer any help?
I believe God offers another way. He invites us to wrestle less and trust Him more. He, who designed time, gives us all the same number of hours. And He does promise sweet sleep and rest to those He loves who will receive it. When you go to bed tonight, try nestling in His love. Leave your work outside your room, and close the door.
Five Things to Help You Sleep Sweeter
If your inability to sleep or rest is physically/medically related, by all means check with your doctor. But for those who identify with over-stress, here are some simple suggestions that might help:
1. Take frequent breaks throughout the day. Give your body–and mind–a chance to relax. Whether you walk, stretch, or indulge in a 10-minute “power” nap, give yourself a break.
2. Ask God to give you wisdom on how to prioritize your day. And while you’re at it, make Him your number one priority. Matthew 6:33 says when we seek Him first, “all these things will be given to you as well” (clothes, food, work, etc.). I like to think that means we can trust God to provide all our needs. Has He ever failed to meet yours?
3. Shut down early. A warm bath, reading a good book, meditating on Scripture–add these to your evening ritual, and subtract computer or mind-robbing activities late at night.
4. Mentally give God your worries, cares, and yes, even your unfinished projects for the night. If necessary, try climbing an imaginary ladder and hand them off to God for the night. Or place them outside your closed door and ask God to stand guard over them (The sooner you can cast your cares permanently on the Lord, the sweeter that sleep might be).
5. Try praising God as you go to sleep. I love to go through the alphabet thinking of names or character traits of God. Or read a Psalm before you turn off the light. Allow God’s Word to calm your Spirit.
Remember not to take on more than God assigns. He cares more about your character rather than your completed checklists.
Ah, worry-free sleep. Sweet dreams!
It’s Your Turn
What about you? Are you wrestling or nestling? Share your comments below.
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February 17, 2015
In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O , will keep me safe (Psalm 4:8, NLT).
You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! (Isaiah 26:3, NLT). Read more
February 10, 2015
We love to give Valentines to each other at this time of year. But someone gave us the best one of all–the perfect Valentine. And He’s the source of all Love.
The Perfect Valentine:
A Personal Valentine from God
I Love You and Will Always Care for You
January 6, 2015
What Lessons Did You Learn in 2014?
What did God teach you in 2014? What lessons did you learn? It would take a book to list them all and to explain how, when, and where God re-emphasized His truths for me. But here, in a nutshell, are 20 simple lessons I learned (and relearned) in 2014: Read more
December 30, 2014
We all need hope and strength to keep moving forward. Here’s a Bible promise to help you get started in the New Year. It’s one of my favorites: Read more
December 16, 2014
Glen patted the wallet in his back pocket. He had landed a job after school as grocery checker at Fergeson’s Super Market and had just cashed his first paycheck. In two weeks, he would be able to make the down payment for that 1985 Chevrolet at Bud’s used car lot. A bicycle was fine for kids. But Glen was tired of the guys teasing him at school. Read more
December 9, 2014
You don’t need a checkbook or credit card for these Christmas gifts. Your spouse will enjoy these inexpensive gifts at Christmas–or any time of the year. Read more
December 2, 2014
It’s the season for giving, but how can you make a difference in someone’s life this Christmas? Here’s one of the best ways I know to truly make a difference: Read more
November 25, 2014
Most of us remember to count our usual blessings from God, especially at times like Thanksgiving. But here are at least eight unexpected blessings we could overlook. You could probably list even more. Let me explain: Read more
November 18, 2014
Home stirs up a variety of images and memories. In recent blogs, I talked about heaven, our real home. But today, I’m offering a new book giveaway from author Deborah Raney called Home to Chicory Lane. A great start to a new Christian fiction series, Deborah’s new book introduces us to the home of the Whitman family. I love the inviting back cover blurb from Deborah’s new book: