Some people can sleep just a few hours per night and wake up fresh as a daisy, ready to face the day. I am not one of those people. At all. I’ve tried to be. I want to be able to stay up late, get up early, and get a lot done, but it backfires every time. If I don’t get enough rest each night, here’s what eventually happens:
- I get grumpy
- My stomach gets upset
- My eyes get scratchy
- I get extremely anxious
- I can’t focus on any one task for long
- I have zero patience (or any other nice qualities)
In this shape, I walk around the house in a fog, getting nothing done, even though it feels like I’m exerting a lot of effort. When I get to the point that coffee doesn’t even help, I know it’s time to just give up and have some down time.
What I have noticed lately is that if I don’t have my “rest time” in the Lord, I exhibit a lot of the same symptoms as when I don’t get enough physical rest. If I don’t spend time with Him like I need to, I’m not very productive or even a nice person, and my anxiety levels will just keep climbing. And beyond that, over time, I end up depressed and miserable from trying to do everything on my own.
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.Matthew 11:28-30
But Jesus is always there to turn to, offering calm from the storms of life. I get so frustrated with the stubborn part of myself that doesn’t immediately seek His help with everything. The Lord offers plenty of opportunities to be spiritually refreshed every day, if I just take advantage of the possibilities He has provided:
- Going to church
- Spending time in prayer
- Reading the Bible
- Singing Praises
- Being still and listening
- Obedience instead of resistance
God even set up an entire day of rest each week, because He knows we need it!
As a mama (or anyone else), making time to rest sometimes seems impossible and gets bumped to the bottom of the to-do list. But I must take care of myself physically, and most important, spiritually, if I am to be of any use to anyone.