It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones. – Psalm 127:2 (NIV)
For those of us who struggle with getting good sleep, this verse in Psalms is not a comfort (but I know I’m loved by God, so rest is still a promise). By some combination of age, depression, and hormones, my sleep has not been good for over a decade. I take something every night (doctor prescribed) so that I can sleep soundly. Without it, I’ll wake up every hour and half.
I’m often tired. Granted this is also because I get up at 5:20 each day. But when my days are really full, I often wake up earlier. And as soon as my mind begins to think about my day, my night is over.
I’ve been in this mode for several months. My pastoral life has been full as well as my personal life. I thank God that I’ve been healthy. And that I can get out to run, walk, and bike. And for the New York Times crossword. And for Dave who cooks dinner every night. And other people and things, too.
But I’m still tired.
And so when I received today’s word, include for me in this season is not about inclusivity or who might be excluded (although I did preach on that last week). Include for me are all the things that are included in my calendar beyond the regular things.
————– five minutes are up
Some of these inclusions are very good – like taking two days to drive to and from Michigan to pick Eldest up from college last week. And some are necessary parts of the cycle of life – like a day of appointments this week at my in-law’s house. But good, bad, or indifferent, they are all inclusions in my calendar that must be allowed.
Most people I know work more than I do. I used to work 60-hour weeks on a regular basis. But my life is not anyone else’s or what my own used to be. It’s not that I can’t work that much but that it’s not good for my soul. I know it’s a luxury to have the options I have to allow the margin I try to maintain in my normal schedule.
But I’m still tired.
And so my prayer is that God will help me be present in each moment and with each person in these full days. I pray that I would have a grateful heart for what is included in my calendar, even when it is not my choice – because regardless, God is present in it. I pray that I would not allow them to simply be bolted on to my days but rather that they would be fully included and in conversation with my life. I pray for good rest and the Sabbath I will include in my calendar for next week. And I pray this for you as well.May I be present and grateful for what it included in my day today, even when it is not my choice for God is present in it. Click To Tweet
It’s Five Minute Friday: “Write for five minutes on the word of the week. This is meant to be a free write, which means: no editing, no over-thinking, no worrying about perfect grammar or punctuation. Just write.”