Insomnia

The irony is not lost on me.
At 3am this morning I was awake. Wide awake. John was crying because his room was too hot – poor kid. And I was awake. I thought about why I must be awake. Was I supposed to be praying for something? I couldn’t think of anything burning. I thought. I tossed. I read. And John was up again. This time we both sat in his rocking chair and rocked and tried to make the time pass until he wanted to play, which was not at all what I had in mind. Back to bed for us both.
About 5:30 I fell asleep, only to be rudely awakened 20 minutes later by an alarm clock that claims it was “merely doing it’s job”. My attempts to resist coffee, which had been successful for the past week, were foiled. Was not going to make it through the day without it.

Insomnia does a number on the personal aesthetics. No wonder they call it “beauty sleep”. [Slight exaggeration of facial features thanks to PhotoBooth.]

In some ways, I have an ideal job. Tuesday through Friday I work 10 hour days, teaching soldiers and their families ways to enhance their lives, connecting them with good stuff like churches and therapy and local social programs. But today is Tuesday. And on Tuesday I talk about sleep. I conduct an educational group or hold large group sessions for soldiers who forgot how to sleep during life stress or deployment or both and need to relearn how it works. So every Tuesday, that’s me, at the ready with sleep science and stress management techniques galore. I’ve been talking about this stuff for two years. I know my material.
Until this morning. I laid awake for two hours, like I tell the guys not to do. I knew I should read, but I just laid there and fought with myself, like I tell them not to do. About 5:15 or so I finally read. Reading worked as the perfect mild sedative it always is. Why did I not do it before, like I tell the guys to do? Ah yes, the doctor is the worst patient, it seems.
Tonight I skipped my satellite group at Mike and Kim’s to cuddle up home in the imminent storm, chili and tea in hand, dog in the kitchen, most of the house to myself. I may be asleep by 9 tonight. Hoping God will talk to me though. I really want to hear from Him, want to know what is going on in the world, in the nation, in our little Bethlehem of a city, and what He wants me to do about it. So much volatility. My goal: to be one of the sons of Isaachar. “From the tribe of Issachar, there were 200 leaders of the tribe with their relatives. All these men understood the signs of the times and knew the best course for Israel to take” (1 Chronicles 12:32). 
So incredible that we can be like that, knowing the seasons, the times. That God can wake us up – mind, soul, body, spirit – and teach us something, in the night, in the day, anytime. We only need to desire to know. And we need to listen.
If you’re going to speak, Lord, wake me up any time.

Isn’t He wonderful? Love this picture of Jesus. He is alive, a man, still speaking to us. Can you believe it?   [Photo credit: the child prodigy and personal friend of God, Akiane]
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