We all know that sleep deprivation makes us tired. But do we know that sleep deprivation makes us sick?
The primary benefit of sleep is the repair that takes place in our bodies when we are in a place of peaceful rest. In deep sleep, our body heals, and brings us to a place of rejuvenation and restoration.
If you look in the pasture or the forest, you won’t find animals up in the middle of the night, unless something is disturbing them – a crisis, a danger, an emergency.
Animals know that sleep is essential for repair and healing. So they get it.
In our techno-addicted world where stress streams through the day, and blue lights from devices stream into our sleep-deprived eyes long after all nature has gone to bed, our bodies are truly and desperately crying for sleep.
We wonder why our digestion is impaired. Why our joints and muscles ache. Why our energy levels are low and why our brain is foggy. We need sleep.
Research shows that exposure to blue light from device screen can disrupt melatonin levels for up to 72 hours – that’s three nights of sleep – compromised!
I came across an interesting observation in John 11, after the story of the raising of Lazurus. The disciples told Jesus, “Lord, if he sleeps, he will get well.” Now the context of this story was the sleep of death, and not the sleep of nocturnal rest. But this point too, in the ancient times, biblical times, they knew, sleep was essential for health.
Need I mention that in a cave or a tomb, where Lazarus was laid, it was completely dark and silent. Those days of his allotted “sleep” were probably the best rejuvenation he had ever known. Jesus’ disciples knew that – “Lord, if he sleeps, he will get well.”
And so he did. Through the raising and healing of Jesus’ hand, after his three days of “sleep,” Lazurus was well.
We should note this principle in Scripture, and in the pasture. Deep sleep is healing. If we sleep, we will get well.
Making it practical:
➢ Sleep with the sun – when the sun begins to set, that’s your cue to head towards bed. When it rises, it’s time to get up. Dark is best – light wakes us up, so keep it dark.
➢ Keep it cool – our bodies go into deeper sleep when the temperature is cooler rather than warmer.
➢ Silence is king – make your bedroom resemble a cave as much as possible. When it’s time to sleep, just sleep.
➢ IMPORTANT: Keep devices, especially smartphones out of your bedroom. The electronic waves from devices disrupt our sleep patterns almost as much as blue light. If you must have your smartphone in your room, put it into airplane mode and use a filter for the blue light (this app can be downloaded from from iTunes or Google Play Store).