Naps Can Be Holy Too

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Hi guys.

I know I’ve been MIA here, but let me reassure you I’m alive and mostly well.

It’s been one heck of a week with my husband gone in Florida and me solo-parenting. *mad props to all the single parents out there by the way* All three boys were sweet and my home is still standing, so that’s a mom win! But my body is flat-out trashed. Sleep, you say? What is sleep? They tell me one day I will remember, but I’m not holding my breath.  😉

Unfortunately, this week has been more than physically draining. My heart has been through literal hell and back, and I’m still trying to recover. I’m not sure if you’ve ever experienced a relational heartache so intense that your body shakes and the tears just don’t stop flowing and there’s nothing you can do about it. I hope you have no idea what I’m talking about because it’s truly something fierce. I’ve wanted to defend myself and clarify an already messy situation, but God has continually asked me to hold my tongue. Words are my thing, and when I’m angry and hurt, I can wield them into some pretty lethal weapons. So, remaining silent for now is probably the wisest thing I can do, but it’s still hard and energy-draining. Once I let things settle down, I promise I will talk a little more about what God is teaching me through this trial, but right now all I want to do is eat chocolate and watch mindless romantic comedies on Netflix. And honestly, I think that’s okay.

I remember when I was a graduate student in seminary one of my professors, Dr. Thrasher, said something to our class that I will never forget. In the midst of our crazed exam prep and paper writing, he looked out into a sea of overwhelmed faces and gave us permission. “You know, sometimes one of the most holy things you can do is take a nap.”

We all laughed, but he repeated himself and made sure we understood he was serious. In that small boxed-in classroom, I remember feeling so free. All the striving to be my best, tackling project upon project, left me in this constant state of pursuit. Always going. Always moving. Always trying. But in those precious moments we all took a collective sigh of relief and recognized that as God’s ministers, we needed to let go and let the Savior of the world minister to us instead.

My professor went on to talk about Jesus and His divine need for rest and refreshment. Can you imagine? The Son of God who was able to do all things, including healing the sick and casting out demons and walking on water… this same man, the physical embodiment of God, actually took the time step away and nap. He paused to let His Father pour into His body and soul because He knew it was not only needed, it was GOOD. If we think we are too busy to stop busting through our calendars, we’ve unintentionally shifted our focus from the peace of the eternal.  We’re more interested in the hustle rather than the holy. It’s so easy to do, and I am preaching to myself here, but I really think God’s children need the blessed permission to PAUSE. REST. REFILL.

If Jesus needed time with His Dad in order to function, why would we not welcome the break as well? If Jesus chose to sleep during storms and pray in the midst of persecution, why would we not accept the same invitation to imitate Him? Jesus didn’t fix His eyes on anything besides the Father and His will, and it is definitely His will that we rest… especially when we feel depleted. Jesus was sure of His relationship with the Father. He knew He was loved and accepted and that nothing He could do would ever change the Father’s opinion of Him. That same assurance has been extended to us, His Sons and Daughters.

We are in Christ, my friends. That means we get to experience the realities of Jesus in our own life. We get to rest in His grace and faithfulness. We get to refresh our spirits with the truths of heaven. We get to embrace our worth as the Father embraces all of us. I don’t remember where I heard this, but we are human beings not human doings.

So, let’s be with our Comforter. Let’s calm our hearts and take a divine step back. It’s more than okay to let Him revive our spirits and bodies in whatever way He deems best. We need Him. We need to soak up His kindness and feel the freedom to relax.

Here’s your permission slip, child of God.  Go on and take that holy nap.