It has been a long time since I had something I had to get up for on Saturday morning. So when I went to bed last night, I was very excited about the probability of sleeping in this morning. I am also realizing that the older I get the less I can sleep in. Do you remember the days when you could sleep till 10am or maybe even 11am in the morning? Now, I can barely make it past 8am. As I lay in bed trying to sleep in, I was brought back to some thoughts I wrote in my book. It is okay to sleep. It is a necessary component of life. We have to sleep. Of course, we do not need to sleep in, that is a luxury. But to get the sleep that our bodies need is very important. One physician said,
"A person can't do without sleep. He may keep it at bay for hours or even days, but eventually everyone must surrender to it. Sleep is indispensable to life itself. Sleep is good for us. It is so important, that even rest is no substitute for sleep . . . sleep provides wakefulness, the alertness needed to be responsible. This one-third of life makes the other two-thirds possible, even if the only function is to enable us to stay alert while awake, this function must be recognized, understood, and respected in our day-to-day lives." (Robert Smith, The Christian Counselor's Medical Desk Reference, 122)
Yet, while I lay in my bed this morning, I did think how easy it is for us to abuse sleep. Too much sleep in a person's life can make a person lazy in life. Living in a state of laziness will make a person more tired. The Proverbs say, "Laziness casts into a deep sleep, and an idle man will suffer hunger" (Prov. 19:15). This should be a warning to us that to sleep in every day or to live our lives in a state of laziness will only produce more laziness in our life. It is not hard work that makes us lazy, but laziness makes us lazy. The Proverbs also give us this stern warning: "Do not love sleep, or you will become poor; open your eyes, and you will be satisfied with food" (Prov. 20:13).
If you did sleep in today, then go and do something active instead of sitting around watching college football all day. I think we are off to pick some apples at a local apple orchard. I am really excited about that.
Why did I include this in my book? It is my contention that people who come rested physically to church will become better listeners to the sermon. If you come too lazy (having too much sleep) or if you come unrested (if you don't get good sleep), you will probably struggle to listen to message God has for you from the Sunday morning sermon. Therefore, feel free to sleep in, but be wise with your sleep.