Time to Awaken from Our Summer Slumber
The coronavirus has changed our lives in many ways — both great and small. One of the seemingly less significant consequences has been the temptation to sleep longer and more often.
After all, with more time on our hands, many of us are opting for additional down time in the form of frequent naps. Admittedly, your Pastor has not been immune to this temptation. It’s mid-afternoon, the service and sermon for the upcoming Sunday are complete, why not take a little snooze?
There’s nothing wrong with this new pattern of behavior. In fact, health experts are suggesting that it might actually be good for us, but on another level, excessive sleep often leads to listlessness, which can result in complacency.
In a spiritual sense, excessive napping can be even more dangerous. The Gospel of Luke admonishes us to, “…keep on the alert at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”
And how about the account from the Gospel of Mark, when Jesus goes to pray in the Garden of Gethsemane, only to find when he returns that his disciples have fallen asleep, not once, not twice, but three times.
Clearly the message for all of us is to stay spiritually awake and alert so that we will be less likely to be blindsided by unforeseen events. None of us could have foreseen the nationwide pandemic and the social unrest that have emerged during the past few months, but it’s not like we were totally unaware that such events could happen.
So what can we do? It doesn’t pay to go in the other direction and spend sleepless nights worrying about what might happen next. On the other hand, if we stay healthy and fit in the Word, we will be better equipped to respond to the unexpected events that throw us off balance and sometimes even vault our lives into chaos. One way to do that is to stay spiritually active by participating in worship, Bible studies, service projects, and even private devotions.
This is why Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, said, “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”
Indeed, the light of Christ is bright enough to keep us alert, to keep us out of danger, and to keep us on the path or righteousness.
Until we meet again, Be Blessed! – Pastor John