Insomnia & Asphalt

I have some friends who don’t sleep very well. Like most every night. They stay up all night and do … well, whatever they do. It just doesn’t involve sleeping. I don’t really have that problem, though I do know what it feels like to occasionally wake up at 3:30am and unsuccessfully return to the wonderful land of slumber. Like many people with busy lives, I often have trouble shutting my brain off at night. Projects, plans and people constantly occupy my thoughts, and when I suddenly awake unexpectedly at some ridiculous hour, my mind kicks into gear. Before long, I’ve compiled a massive “To Do List” and I become overwhelmed. That’s usually when I start brewing a pot of coffee so thick it could be poured as asphalt.

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But sometimes this proclivity towards productivity also spawns an unhealthy dose of anxiety. Can I complete these tasks on schedule? Am I doing enough to help this person? Will this project be successful? You know, all the things that kill any chance of a good night’s sleep. So I typically turn this time into an opportunity to talk to God about all the “stuff” filling my life – writing, creating, pastoring, speaking, and being a committed father, husband and Christ-follower. I read somewhere that He likes it when His children dump all their cares on Him (1 Peter 5:7). I’ve always loved it when my sons brought their problems to me, and I think God feels the same way about His offspring.

This of course, in no way removes my responsibilities or magically obliterates the burdens from my life, but it does let me know that Someone genuinely cares. And that makes the next nights sleep a real possibility

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