Why Don’t I Feel Quite As Good as I Should?
An article in this morning’s Australian Newspaper – You’d Better Sleep On It – outlines some important research on the significant impact of inadequate sleep on our sense of well being. Seems that there’s a very strong correlation between the two. So – if you’re not getting enough sleep, don’t be surprised if you don’t feel on top of the world.
But … there’s another form of regeneration – spiritual regeneration – that we need on a daily basis as well. And as it turns out, most of us are missing out on that as well!
Our Crazy, Mixed Up Lives
For most of us, our lives are incredibly hectic and that equates to pressure and stress. I know plenty of people who trot off to church each Sunday, whose sense of well being is, well … let’s just say “below par”. They have a sneaking suspicion that something’s not quite right, but what?
You might be wondering – why hasn’t Berni been blogging lately? Has he fallen off the planet? No. I’ve simply been too busy. India, Africa … back to Australia, a backlog of writing and recording. Redeveloping our website. Then a week’s break. And now, in a few days I hop back onto a plane to India again. It’s a full life. No doubt, you have your own pressures and story to tell.
And what I’ve noticed is that the busier life gets, the more we’re tempted to cut short – even cut out – our times of spiritual renewal. Those quiet times with God each morning, or evening, or whenever works best for you. And when you think about it, that’s nuts! Because the more hectic and pressurised and stressed our environment becomes, the more we need that time of quiet, spiritual renewal with God.
I’m not talking a rushed few minutes with the Lord. Or a half hour where your mind is darting all over the place and the last thing you’re doing is focussing on God Himself. I’m talking a luxurious, focussed, blessed time where out of the midst of the tumult, we focus on God. Read just a small part of His Word. Enjoy who He is and what He’s done and what He’s doing and … hear His voice and know the quiet yet powerful assurance of His Presence and provision and …
Remember those times? Remember how awesome they were? So … what went wrong?
Just too busy I guess. So here’s the Word of God to speak His gentle love into your tumultuous existence:
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble with its tumult. Selah
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of the city; it shall not be moved;
God will help it when the morning dawns.
The nations are in an uproar, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
Come, behold the works of the Lord;
see what desolations he has brought on the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
“Be still, and know that I am God!
I am exalted among the nations,
I am exalted in the earth.”
The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.
So … What’s God Saying?
When with the earth’s shaking and the mountains are falling into the ocean, when the nations around us are in uproar and the kingdoms are tottering, when everything that brings us that assurance of safety and security and rest and peace is falling apart before our very eyes, right there in that moment, there’s one thing that hasn’t changed. And that one thing is this:
God is still in our midst and His river of gladness is still flowing right through the middle of who we are.
But here’s the problem. We’re so focussed on the tumultuous events in which we seem to be drowning, that we miss powerful reality. And so even though He’s still here, we’re in effect disconnected from, removed from His power, His joy, that sense of safety and protection and …. well being… that we experience when we know that He is with us.
God’s solution? Simple.
Be still and know that I am God.
Right there is the daily spiritual renewal that you and I so desperately need. Right there is the solution to that feeling of rudderlessness and powerlessness that we’re struggling with.
Be still and know that I am God.
The one thing we need in times of tumult and trouble. Yet the one thing that we unwittingly dispense with … because it seems we’re just too busy. Crazy huh?
The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.
And the only way we lay hold of that, is by getting still, resting in Him quietly, and just … knowing …
Thanks Bernie.Good message.There sure is no substitute for time spent with God
Hi Berni and every one reading this. May God richly bless you with his grace and peace.
I find God often rewards me for making that effort to put time aside with him. It is lovely to know that He actually enjoys being with us.
He loves to shower us with His love and peace. After the main aim is to know him and enjoy a living relationship with Him.
Thanks Berni. What we sow is what we reap.
Hey! Feeling tired, overworked , stressed out?
You would agree that most people can answer YES to these.
Good on you Berni. As you started out saying at the beginning, we start behind the 8 ball almost everyday. Lack of adequate sleep overnight, then we rush through each morning just getting ready for our daily routine ,( and that is before we even leave the house) and to make it all a successful failure of a day , we try to run to everyone else’s poorly planned schedules.
Enough, i say!
Firstly, quality of LIFE is determined by QUALITY of sleep. Inadequate sleep quality will drain the life out of us, and by this I don’t mean not enough sleep, but lack of quality sleep. So get tested by a professional and see how poorly you may be breathing each night. Sleep apnoea is one of the worst conditions, and more people are suffering from it than they think. I see the results of it every day in my work.
Secondly, don’t get out of the house before you spend some quality time in the Word of God. And don’t think that a “prayer time” is telling God all the things you need to get through the day. As if he does not already know what you need. Give in to him ( submit) and let Him take control of the day.
Thirdly, I have something to constantly remind me during the day that it is all about HIM. Our day is to be lived for His glory, not to satisfy all the whims and demands of those who think that you have to keep to their poorly planned day.
If someone is giving you the hurry up, ask them ” do you want me to do a thorough , finished result” or would you prefer the ” rushed job”?
This is not selfishness, it is a fruit of the spirit called ” self control”
Our lives should display the things Christ intended for us. He did not lay down His life for us to have an overworked, stressed out life.
Cheers Berni. Chill out , Be still and enjoy the abundant life He gave His for .
Ps 3:5,6 ” I lie down, and sleep. I wake again, because the Lord sustains me. I will not feat the tens of thousands drawn up against me on every side”
And with that, I’m off to Bed. Goodnight. !
Hey Berni, perfect word of encouragment to link into at the end of a ‘busy’ day. ‘Being still’ is hard for an ‘Achiever’, but oh so good medicine for the wiery soul! Thanks for the ‘right’ perspective!
Thanks Berni, yes have to keep reminding myself … He is with me and He is my refuge. Thanks again.
Hey Berni, you always seem to have the relevant message! Thank you for reminding me that time with God is my priority, not work, though that seems to take all my time at the moment. I crave time with God and will continue to pray that He may show me the way to find it! Thank you again!
Thanks Berni for providing the opportunity for a hard hitting relevant blog for a devotion. For years I have been feeling guilty for not being able to committ to the practice of time out through a daily devotion but I now realise I could not identify or connect with the content. They appeared lame and “Christian cheesy” against the issues I was dealing with. Your content is so relevant to the daily grind. I thank you and pray for travelling mercies as you act as God’s special vessel to so many people in so many places.
Thanks Berni the right message at the right time.
One of my favourite hyms begins with the words “Be still for the power of the Lord is moving in this place” so true when we take the time to stop and listen!!
Yes Berni , you are so right, something we should keep in our minds at all times………. Bert.
“Be still and know that I am God” – how valuable those words are, and how often I forget them, in my hectic and worry-filled life. Thanks, Berni, for the very timely reminder to take ‘time out’ for the Creator and Lord of all..
Excellent and timely post. Thanks Berni, just what God has been saying to me – be still. Hardest thing in the world sometimes. LOL PS Missed your posts.
Thanks, Berni, spot on, my quiet times have become pretty non-existant over the last few months, been asking God for direction, reinstigating them will give me a chance to hear His answer…