“And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing.” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.
“To nap, or not to nap: that is the question.”
William Shakespeare (kinda)
First off, I want to apologize for not posting a blog the past 2 weeks. Life has been a little crazy; I’ve been driving with the gas light on, figuratively and literally. Today has been the first day in two whole weeks I’ve been able to sit down and blog. And this wasn’t even my own doing. The Lord is the one who sat me down. I should be in class right now, but I’m not. Instead, I’m sitting on my couch recovering from a routine blood giving appointment that left me dizzy and physically sick. So Big Guy, I hear your message loud and clear – I need to rest and I need a nap. I knew I needed one, I just didn’t have the time. It’s kind of funny actually, I started this blog about the importance of napping three weeks ago in the hopes of posting it two weeks ago. My schedule, though, just didn’t allow me to sit down and blog. Besides, when was the last time I actually napped? I don’t even know. So here I am today, writing this blog, telling you I will most definitely be taking a nap as soon as I finish writing this blog.
Like I mentioned, the past two weeks have been beyond busy. Between school, my normal job, the fair coming to town where I pick up shifts for a friend who owns a booth, babysitting, socializing, eating, and sleeping, I may have scheduled myself a little too tightly. Definitely my own fault; I thought I could handle it. Sure, I survived, but I wasn’t exactly thriving. It was a little rough. My sleep took the biggest hit. For 5 days straight I slept for less than 5 hours a night. Oof. But you know what? The Lord is still faithful in teaching me a lesson or two. The past two weeks taught me two things – (1) the importance of finding my strength in Him and (2) the importance of finding my rest in Him. Despite the past two weeks being hectic, I was still able to get into and read the Word every single day. I started reading through the Psalms and found myself praising Him reading David’s praises. By reading the Word every single morning, I was able to ask the Lord to be my strength. I knew I needed to ask Jesus to be the one who acts and the one who speaks for me. And like I said, He is so faithful. He did that for me. He became my source of strength and I was able to keep moving forward. And this made a huge difference – one that I’d like to think people are subconsciously thanking the Lord for. If you know me personally, you know that sometimes I can get grumpy if I’m tired; I can get sassy and irritable, too. And let me tell you I WAS tired. But by the Lord being my source of strength, I was able to persevere in a positive manner and not be my sassy self.
And if I’m being real, I have greatly enjoyed finding my strength in Him. Finding strength in myself wastes energy, time, and emotion. It’s draining. I only have so much strength as a mere human, but His strength is infinite. When I learned to find my strength in Him, that’s when I was able to rest. I wasn’t wasting the little time, energy, and emotion I had left on being my own strength. It takes less time, less energy, and less emotional distress to trust God to be your strength. That’s how I’ve been able to rest the past few weeks. I know, considering the events of the past two weeks, that seems far fetched. My mom would really question whether or not I’ve been able to rest. But I’m telling you the truth. In all of the chaos, I was able to rest. I was able to wake up, feeling tired as heck, knowing I was going to make it. I knew God was my strength. I knew He was sustaining me. I knew I didn’t have to plan everything. I knew I didn’t have to stress over things. I knew the Lord’s hand would be under me. And it was. I wasn’t able to physically take a nap like I wish I could have, but I was able to mentally and physically rest in my morning devotional time with Him.
Just like Jesus was able to rest in the midst of a storm, we need to be able to do the same, too. As I’m sure you have figured out from your time thus far on this earth, things aren’t always easy. Sometime you thrive and other times you simply survive. And still there’s times you wonder if you’re really surviving at all. Sometimes you’re on a little rinky dink boat that is being swamped by waves. You’re freaking out – you’re doing everything in your power to control the situation. Welllll, stop. When was the last time your own human power stopped a storm? Probably never. So quit trying. Quit wasting your strength on something that will have no change. When Jesus was in this same situation, He was calm. Actually, he was napping, remember? Why? Because He had faith. He goes so far as to call out the others on the boat by asking them “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?”. Jesus trusted His father to protect them so he was able to take a nap. He knew His father would sustain them. He found His strength and His rest in the Father. Jesus was too faithful and too smart to waste His time worrying and stressing about the storm at hand. He knew all too well that His father would handle it. That’s the point I want to be at. Am I a ‘you of little faith’? yeah, sometimes. Are you? You might be sometimes, too. But I don’t want to have little faith. I want to have Jesus like faith. I want to know with every ounce of my body that God will handle everything. And honestly, as I’m learning, the more you have faith, the more faith you have. The more the Lord has forced me to trust in Him and not in myself, the easier it has become to trust in Him. I know it worked out even better than I had planned last time, so you know what God, I’ll let you handle it this time, too. While you do that, I’ll take a little nappy poo.
Trust is how I’ve been able to rest despite the raging storms. I don’t have to waste my time standing on the boat worrying about if or when the storm will stop. I know it will. Sometimes it lasts longer than we would like, but it always dies down. Jesus knew the storm would stop, too; he wasn’t worried the storm would overtake them. He had big faith, not little faith. So the next time a storm arises, think about what Jesus would do. Would Jesus get the nervous sweats? Would Jesus cry until he couldn’t breathe? Would He waste all His time pacing around the boat? Nope. He trusted his father was going to protect them and therefore, he was able to rest. So girl, I hope you rest, too. When you’re in the midst of a storm and you catch yourself worrying and stressing, take a nap. To nap or not to nap, that really is the question. You can waste your limited nap time worrying about the storm at hand OR !! you can take a nap trusting that the Lord will be your strength through the storm. I know what I’m going to do. Hint, it starts with n and ends with ap. Girl, I hope you do the same. Find your strength in Him. Trust him. Then rest in Him. Catch ya on the flip side. Zzzzzzzz