With a new baby in the house I am beginning to wonder what a full night’s sleep actually feels like. When you’re sleep deprived, everything is more difficult. Making decisions is more difficult. Staying sharp in the afternoon is more difficult. Even things that are otherwise routine are made more difficult. It helps me to understand when I talk to the person working two or three jobs, or even searching for one job when they say, “I’m tired.” I wonder less about the person who has conflict at home or who has worries that keep them up at night when they say, “I’m tired.” It certainly makes me think twice before I complain of my blessed version of sleep deprivation.
One great source of fatigue is the constant barrage of life’s problems. As Christians, we have no fewer problems than anyone else, we just have a God-ordained way of dealing with them. During our Sundays in Lent, as we tirelessly journey toward the cross of Jesus, we will see how God wants us deal with temptation, suffering, foolishness, desires, weakness and attitude. The answers may surprise you, comfort you and hopefully inspire you to go on.
Questions People Ask
Few Christians can claim fatigue as the reason they fear sharing Jesus with their unbelieving friends and relatives. Usually there is a fear of awkwardness, a fear of rejection, and often a fear of inadequacy. “What if they ask a tough question and I don’t know how to respond?” Well, I can’t guarantee that the moment won’t be awkward or that they will necessarily accept what you are saying, but we can prepare for some of the questions that may arise. On Wednesdays in Lent (11am/7pm) we will explore “Questions People Ask” so that you can be ready when they ask questions like these: “Where’s the proof?” “Just your God?” “What makes your book so special?” “Why evil?” “Am I just a puppet?” I pray this helps you as you share God’s love through Jesus to others.
In my sleep deprived state I am reminded how anything good happens in this world. “16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created. (James 1:16-18) God chose to give you birth. God gives every good and perfect gift, including salvation by faith. God uses you for His purpose… no matter how tired you are. Rely on His strength, His purpose, His overwhelming grace, not only to make it through each day, but to do so as His instrument.
Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light; and where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand; to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life. Amen. (Prayer of Saint Francis)