In peace I will both lie down and sleep,For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety. Psalm 4:8 (NASB)
I people with all kinds of problems in my counseling office. I recall once meeting with a woman who was sleep deprived. She exhibited all the signs of a person having a psychotic break from reality. She babbled nonsensically, was hysterically crying off and on, would get up and run around the room in circles, was rubbing her hands together to the point they were raw and was telling me about the aliens coming to take over the world.
Her husband told me she had not slept in several days, since having a huge fight with her father at a family event. I was thankful he called me instead of taking her to the nearest emergency room. After spending some time with them I suggested he take her home and have her get some rest. If she was no better upon awakening he would have to consider other options. He called the next day and said she slept nearly 24 hours and woke up totally normal.
We are at a time in history when technology and convenience has made our lives so easy in comparison to our ancestors. Life requires very little of the manual labor that marked the lives of people in the early 19th Century, yet fatigue and tiredness have become a way of life for many people. If we are to think biblically about all aspects of life, we must look at fatigue from God’s perspective as well.
The majority of us try to live on too little sleep. We take in too much caffeine and energy drinks during the day to stay on top of the schedules we pack full of activities and tasks. Too many people abuse their body and expect it to function normally. First step is to remove the self-inflicted causes of fatigue. Correct your diet, and get a little exercise each day if you can.
The human body requires 7-8 hours of sleep each night to detoxify. Few of us get that, and many people report difficulty in even falling asleep due to worrying about problems and events of the day. The sleep they do get is of poor quality due to worry and anxiety.
Do you know that one of the two major reasons for sleeplessness that leads to fatigue in daily life is unbiblical responses to the problems of daily life? When problems are not handled in a biblical manner, conflicts remain unresolved and fester all day and into the night.
The emotions involved in conflict are typically anger, frustration which both create and sap energy throughout the day. Thinking about the conflict or problem and the resulting hurt, bitterness, or unfairness also takes place as the person goes about their daily chores or workday. Even if the person is able to push it back from the forefront of their mind during the day, when they go to bed at night it becomes a part of the thinking process once again.
If there is only one stressful issue to deal with, oftentimes it can be overcome and set aside but problems tend to come in bunches! When a person has several of these kinds of issues to mull over and deal with the body pays the price through restlessness and sleep deprivation.
If you are tired all the time the first thing to do is to get a solid medical check up to be sure there are no organic causes such as a thyroid problem or an undiagnosed heart condition. Diet can also play a role in sleep problems. However, if some organic cause is discovered you must still learn to respond biblically to both the physical cause and the resulting spiritual issues of a medical diagnosis (Romans 8:28-29).
As Christians our goal is to look at all of life through a biblical framework. The biblical answer to non-organic fatigue is to do everything possible to resolve conflicts with other people before the day is over and avoid taking problems to bed with you.
Make a list of the things in your life that are troubling you. Do you have relationships that are fractured? What can you do about your part in the discord? Is humility required on your end? Have you sinned against someone and will confession and asking their forgiveness bring restoration?
Do you have financial woes? So many do these days and not all of their own doing either. The economy has brought great hardship through job loss and higher taxes on smaller incomes into many lives. Consult someone for financial help (Dave Ramsey, Crown Financial) and get on a debt reduction plan that includes a budget. Even if it takes time to get things under control, you will sleep better knowing you are taking pro-active steps in the right direction.
Understand that God is sovereign over all the things that enter your life. Consider that He has allowed the problems to help you to build character in certain areas like self-control or humility. You can trust Him to complete what has begun.
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