Sleep More. Worship More. The Secret to a Good Life
It occured to me the other day, while deliberating over whether to take a nap or just “get some stuff done” that sleep and worship are, or at least can be, analogies for each other. It’s all too easy to notice the decline in energy, productivity, and just simple amicability when your sleep account balance is looking low. Maybe something similar can be said for worship…
The article that told me to sleep
Agi, my wife, and I had a particularly…bad night with being awake rocking, feeding, or otherwise placating our beautiful but decidedly unsleeping children. Nothing spectacular, just the kind of experience that will visit any parent more often than you’d like.
So, after the sun rose, I sat bleary eyed in the living room with both kids while Agi had an hour or so catch up (not that she remotely caught up with the accumulated lack of sleep but hey, semantics, and I’m digressing anyway). Then her mum came over and the two of them took the two kids out to the park while I was told to ‘go to bed!’ (Never thought I’d welcome that instruction a few years ago…)
Well, I did go to the bedroom … but then I wondered whether the time might be better spent “sucking it up” and “getting something done”. After all, what else is caffeine for?
So, like any sensible Gen Y-er, I consulted Google. On my iPhone.
Here’s the article I ended up reading. After some amusing and disconcerting points about the need most adults have for at least 7.5 hours of sleep each night, and the deal with “sleep debt”, I read:
“Put sleep at the top of your to-do list.”
And so I put my phone down, rolled over, and fell asleep.
What’s sleep got to do with worship?
Sleep helps you operate at maximum effectiveness in your waking hours, affecting your energy, productivity and general friendliness.
Worship helps you operate at maximum effectiveness in your spiritual life, affecting your zeal, good works and love.
How much worship do you need?
So how hard is that, really? How hard is it to live a life of zeal, or passion, or driven-ness for God, if it comes down only to you? How easy is it to be a person of good works, or virtues, or to do the things God wants us to do? How naturally does it come to you to be focussed not on yourself, but others, where your priority and inclination is to freely give of your time, energy and resources for someone else (even that pesky/annoying person you try to avoid…)?
For me, if I’m honest, all that stuff is pretty hard. Sure, I can think of easy, get-myself-off-the-hook, ‘lite’ versions of those things that I might be able to conjur up enough effort for with a decent amount of sleep – but not for the real deal.
To really be that kind of passionate-for-God, virtuous, loving person, I need bucket-loads of grace, of God-in-me, and maybe more particularly: me directed to God. And I need worship to get there.
How much worship do I need? The more the better. Maybe the sleep experts are onto something. Maybe 7.5 hours a day would do it. Maybe I should put it at the top of my to-do list.
Question: What do you find best helps you to have more “zeal, good works and love”? You can leave a comment by clicking here.