Yes, it is true. Sleep really does help. Health care professionals say it’s important and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says, “Sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout your life. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times can help protect your mental health, physical health, quality of life, and safety.” (See this web site for more: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/sdd/why). Yet it seems a lot of people don’t seem to get enough and walk around sleep deprived. I was grabbing a quick, but healthy lunch at a local restaurant, and as I was paying for my food, the cashier got a bit confused and apologized saying, “Sorry, I hardly got any sleep last night.” My wife and I were out and greeted an employee handing out samples, and in asking how she was doing, she responded emphatically, “Exhausted!” We hear it at work, at home, at school, out shopping, almost everywhere people are either expressing how tired they are or looking wearied, drained, fatigued, and simply tired.
Now, there are a lot of reasons people can’t seem to get the sleep they need: busy life, medical issues, some medicines can cause insomnia, emotional issues, too much caffeine or sugar, having a new baby in your home, stress, pain, eating too much, watching too much TV, and the list goes on. As well, people react differently, and what affects one person’s sleep may not affect yours. Regardless, we all need sleep, and sleep really helps.
Medical experts and physiologists all agree that sleep is an important reality of life and truly helps our quality of life. There is also a spiritual aspect of sleep that really helps as well. First, we were created by God with a necessity for sleep and rest.
Psalm 127:2 It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for He gives to His beloved sleep.
It is part of God’s design that we take time every day to sleep. Our human bodies need it. But secondly, it reminds us that we are limited, finite people and not some god-type being that has no limits. I knew a man who thought he was mentally superior to most, and that sleep was for the weak. Sure, he may not have required as much sleep as some, but it greatly affected his health. See, it is God who never sleeps. He is God and His power is limitless, but we are not God.
Psalm 121:1-4 I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? 2 My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. 3 He will not let your foot be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. 4 Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
It is a comforting reality that as we rest God watches over us.
Psalm 4:8 In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.
Psalm 3:5-6 5 I lay down and slept; I woke again, for the LORD sustained me. 6 I will not be afraid of many thousands of people who have set themselves against me all around.
A third reason sleep is good for the soul is that it puts us in a place where we release control. We humans love to be in charge and in control of much of what is around us. In sleep, we let go and rest from the efforts, toils, hassles, and having to be “on” in life. This time of release is important to recalibrate us and fuel us for the next day. It puts us in that place of trust in God.
Proverbs 3:5-8 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. 7 Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD, and turn away from evil. 8 It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.
Jesus says He will help us find rest if we seek Him.
Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
I know I have struggled with sleep at times, but I do know God designed sleep and that sleep really helps.
Though church is not designed to be a place where we catch up on sleep (though I’m sure some do), it is a great place to learn of our amazing God and that we rest, trusting in Him. If you do not regularly attend a church, we would like to invite you to Cypress Church or one or our branch churches. Our web site has all the information for all our campuses: www.cypresschurch.net . We would love for you to rest in the Lord with us.
Seeking to enjoy better sleep as you do as well,