Tuesday, July 15, 2008
It's 12:08 a.m. and I can't sleep. This often happens during the summer when I sleep until 10:00 in the morning. My internal clock is saying it's only 9:30 p.m. right now and there's no need to get in bed quite yet. My real-live clock reminds me that the sun is coming up in 5 1/2 hours and unless I want this to happen again tomorrow night, I better go to sleep. But it's summer, and I love staying up late. The only problem is that Mark still has to work and there's no one to stay up late with. Unfortunately, I lay in my bed thinking... wondering... pondering... thinking... wondering... pondering...and on and on until I just can't take anymore. Sometimes I count sheep, other times I do deep breathing, but most often I try to drink a steaming mug of caffine free hot tea. My favorite bedtime tea is cozy camomile or sleepy time. But that's not the only remedial tea you can find these days. There's detox tea, dieter's tea, energy tea, fruity tea, antioxidant tea, flowery tea, herbal tea, medicinal tea, and the list goes on. Their names alone offer hope to the sleepless, diet-obsessed, health nut, but somehow they always seem to come up short. As I laid in my bed tonight and let the wheels turn round and round in my head, it occured to me that too often I have let restlessness steal the joy that's found in waiting and expecting God to move in my life. We are often restless ramblers walking around with our eyes sealed giving the appearance of one who finds peace in God, but never truly surrendering our minds, bodies, and spirits to Him. We claim to know Him, to follow Him, and even to be satisfied with Him, but we impatiently seek a back up plan unless God doesn't come through for us and give us what He promises us. We doubt, attempt to hide our unbelief, and lower our expectations of God. Irritated with the inevidable lack of divine activity in our lives, we secretly sneak into the kitchen to indulge in a cunningly packaged flavor of tea that claims to provide whatever we need. Although delicious at first, the tea unavoidably, begins to taste like bland hot water, and it soon becomes a lukewarm letdown as you near the last sip. Reality is that if I simply went to bed at 10 and woke up at 6, as I do during the school year, I would probably not still be awake writing this and I would be fast asleep. I could drink all the tea in my cabinet and it would not give my body the rest that it needs. Only a disciplined schedule and peace of mind will give me that. Similarly, all the allurements of the world can not substitute the astounding glory that is revealed when we rest and wait expectantly for God to show up in our circumstances. When we "cease striving, and know that He is God" our mind is at peace, our hearts are at rest, our bodies are relaxed, and our spirits are full of hope. "Find rest oh my soul in God alone, my hope comes from Him..." How did we begin thinking that tea could give us that?
Posted by The Brannan Brief! at 10:08 PM