Lately, I have had much trouble sleeping. The whys and wherefores are not the point here (and hopefully being addressed soon).
The point is that I have become very well acquainted with the effects of sleep, as well as the lack of it which has caused me think about Rest, the all-important state Jesus offers:
"Come unto Me all you who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest... you will find rest for your souls..." Matthew 11:28
Hebrews 4:4, 5
"...God rested on the seventh Day...they shall enter into My Rest"
When I generally sleep well, it's like having a reserve. I can go a day even two with minimal sleep and be fine, functioning properly : my mind works, thoughts line up and follow a logical sequence, I have initiative and make plans.
After many nights of not enough sleep, an even shorter night throws me into utter useless, non-functionality the whole next day.
In that state of non-rest, my mind doesn't function properly, weak thoughts trail off without coming full circle: I've put towels in the fridge that way. I can't bounce back emotionally, my reflexes are slow (bad for driving), getting more irritated at contradiction, unable to rise to the occasion or even regain a sense of hope for the future. My brain feels dried up, no elasticity or even movement, sluggishness, even hopelessness.
Then I sleep well one night (thank you sleeping pill). Oh the difference! I can think, formulate plans, get things done I even have a positive outlook, bounce back, react quickly.
I realize now hope takes energy. A positive outlook requires rest.
It made me think of how often we don't rest in God. How often do I see professed followers of Christ with a negative outlook, critical of others or of themselves (or both), as people who are resigned and expect nothing good.
It's changing the way I see life and my walk in this world: first seek to enter into His Rest, without it there is no proper perspective on anything, let alone anyone. I've come to view that sense of hopeless resignation with suspicion: is the person entering into God's rest? Am I?
In 2018, I wish us all more of this Rest He offers, to know the buoyancy of hope, the strength of the refreshing because we are renewed day by day.