Rest

Because of the complexity of our being, there is no quick fix, no magic pill, to fix what ails us. There are many things we can do to support the health and healing of our bodies. In the last blog, I encouraged you to do a self-examination without judgment.

How are you sleeping?

This isn’t a question to assign blame; it’s a question that requires a practical response first.

Are you sleeping 8 hours straight or a fitful 6 hours? Do you barely sleep during the week and then nap all weekend? Do you sleep deeply every night at about 7 hours on average?

Everyone is different. Your body is different. Your season of life is different than your friends’ seasons. Don’t answer your question based on what you think is right. Take a week to examine your sleep patterns. How do you feel when you wake up each morning?

I went to college with a friend who needed 9 solid hours of sleep a night to function and she made sure she got it. Do you know what your body needs?

Most studies indicate that adults need between 7.5 and 8 hours a night for the body to function at its optimum. If you’re not getting this, what’s stopping you for getting the amount you know you need (it’s somewhere around the 8 hours mark).

A good night’s sleep is like shutting down (or restarting) a computer. Have you ever had a computer problem that turning it off fixed it? Our bodies are much like that. We need to be “turned off” so that our bodies can make the necessary adjustments while we rest.

The Bible prescribes a whole day of rest. You don’t have to turn this into a wooden rule that you must follow, but it is another good place to do a self-examination.

Do you have one day a week that doesn’t feel like work all day long? Again, everyone is at a different season of life. If you have triplet toddlers, you have no days that are work from 6am to midnight. If that is you (or feels like your life), what active and committed steps are you taking to get some rest?

Rest is a commitment. Whether it is a good night’s sleep or a rest day (I recommend both), you have to commit to it to get it. Put it on the calendar, block out the time, turn off the phone and the TV, send the kids to grandma’s; whatever signals commitment to you do that thing.

Getting adequate rest is just one limb of the tree of life, a healthful life, an abundant life, a life full of hope and healing. Jesus came so that we would have abundant life. Why are you fighting his work by not allowing yourself to rest?

-Jobie Watson