Talking of Sleep

September 11, 2008 — Leave a comment

As I write this, I’m at work having a hard time staying awake.

It’s the end of a long work-week–heading into a busy weekend–and I’m feeling really tired.

As I was counting the hours until bed-time I started thinking about how much we sleep.

If I live to be 90 years old and average 7 hours of sleep a night then I will sleep 229,950 hours of the 788,400 hours of my life. This means that I will be asleep for 29.1% of my life which means that of my 90 years I’ll be unconscious for about 26 of them.


(I need to invest in a more comfortable mattress.)

Sleep is a good thing for people. If we don’t sleep, we die. If you’re like me, when you think about sleep it makes you happy. There is nothing better than a Sunday afternoon nap while the steady and slightly muffled hum of a NASCAR race drones on from the TV on the other side of the room.

To people sleep is an enjoyable and essential part of healthy human life, but just the opposite is true of the Church.

Sleep is a bad thing for the Church.

Whenever God thinks about his Church sleeping it makes him anything but happy.

God has plans for his Church to be “at rest,” but not on this side of Heaven.

On this side of Heaven God expects his Church to be awake, so, through the Apostle Paul, God issued a universal wake up call to His Church when he said:

The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. (Romans 13:11, TNIV)

Are you awake?

Is your church awake?

Do you need an alarm?

Alarms are designed to confront silence, ignorance, lethargy, improper behavior, apathy, and sleep and—if an alarm does what it is designed to do then it is an instrument of hope.

Your first thought when you think of an alarm may be negative–and that’s understandable since most of us begin our day with the sound of an alarm startling us out of a completely snug and relaxed state and signaling the start of the day. But, alarms aren’t completely negative. If we stop to think about it—and focus on the results—alarms are actually quite positive calls to action.

The sounding of an oven alarm means the cookies are done.

The sounding of a dash-board alarm means that you’ve left your headlights on . . . and you’ll not be searching for someone with jumper-cables in the parking lot after work.

The sounding of a smoke alarm means that there is a fire in the building and you now have a chance to get out before it gets too bad.

The sounding of an alarm clock means that a day full of opportunities has begun.

The sounding of a security alarm signifies—hopefully—that an evening of crime is now over.

And, the sounding of a car alarm means absolutely nothing!

But I digress.

Today, reading Romans 13:11, was an alarm for me–a reminder that the clock is ticking and there is still so much work to be done.

My favorite server at the restaurant across the street doesn’t know Jesus, yet.

My neighbor isn’t saved, yet.

My three youngest kids still need to be discipled.

So many people in Greeley are yet to hear about Christ.

It’s time for me to wake up . . . it’s time for us to wake up and get to work.


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