Ah, I find myself having a perfect day of total slowing-down.... opposed to so much hype and hurry that my days of late have been so incredibly filled with. I'm so excited about having NO WHERE that I have to go today that I can hardly stand myself. I don't have to fix the face, nor doo the hair, nor even find something cute enough to wear out in. My kids are either at work or school, my husband out of town, and I've decided to ignore whatever the house begs my attention for to sit instead and drench myself in God's Wonderful Word. I can't even begin to tell you my excitement in its anticipation. And yet................ I find myself so fantastically sleepy that I'm having to fight every second to hold my eyes open to stay awake. I'm so aggravated and frustrated at myself ! It's 9:52 a.m. already... and I've hardly done a thing. The soaking I'm trying to sink myself in seems to be the very lull that puts me to sleep. And I was wanting a fire that starts blazing inside, not a light that seems barely burning and one that's about to be blown out to total darkness.
"Ah, Lord God, wake me up over here! I need a jolt of "Light"ning's power to wake this girl up from her sleep! I can't help but think of Your Scripture and hear You say them to me:
"Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you."
Or, as the King James Version words it:
"Wherefore He saith
Awake thou that sleepest,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ shall give thee Light."
Ah, indeed! It IS that "Light" that I'm longing and looking for!
"Awake" - is a word defined as meaning: "to arouse; to cause to rise from a seat or a bed; to raise, to stir up." So... I've roused myself up from the seat where I've been sitting; and I've heated myself a hot bowl of soup to sip with my cold can of Coca-Cola Classic in efforts to stir my heart's beating.....
"WAKE UP," I say to myself! I've let the dogs out, and started the dishwasher, and put away a few things left out from the night before's busy..... "WAKE UP," I yell! "WAKE UP," because time's ticking! Yet it ticks and it tocks in its tremendous great hurry and quickly I'm losing the morning that I was so wishing to be able to hold on to in efforts to accomplish all that I had planned for it.
In remembering the verse that I'm using again, who was it that was told to "awake"? Awake thou that sleepest." "Sleepest" being defined from a Greek word as meaning: "to fall asleep, or to drop off to sleep; to sleep normally / (or) euphemistically, to be dead / (and) metaphorically: to yield to sloth and sin, and to be indifferent to one's salvation." That one word alone seems to hold so much meaning that I could live and chew and ponder and glean and yield from that one lone word by itself for days. In my immediate moment, it's the first word's defining that fits me. I just need to wake myself up from falling off to a normal sleep or dropping off to my slumber. In my days before my salvation, it was the second "sleepest" definition that I needed wakened from.... From the dead! For in my sin and without Jesus' salvation, I was doomed an eternal death. But it's the third definition's meaning ("to yield to sloth and sin, and to be indifferent to one's salvation") that is the scariest of all.... and I've been there in that "sleep" as well. And oh, what a sleep that needs to be shaken up and waked up from!
"Awake thou that sleepest" - Awake from your place of yielded slothfulness. Awake from where you've given over to sin! Awake from your realm of total "indifference to salvation"! Ooo... scary thought! Oooo.... every scarier place! And too many in this world are sleeping... while those of us that are "awake" allow them peace inside their slumber. Ugh, what are we thinking?! We're left here to rouse them from their suspended state of unconsciousness... yet in our hustle and bustle of busy we leave them in their tombed cocoons and don't think to give another thought of it. I've been guilty. Am guilty now. I feel the overwhelming conviction! And I wonder if you're guilty too? Oh my, for I now wonder if God's Spirit hadn't led me to that Scripture this morning on purpose, because I've got MORE places to waken from than just merely fighting a morning's need for a nap that looms to take over me?
Is there someone sleeping in your world? And (if you bother to look) might you find them all around you? Snoring in their stupors? Tossing in their tombs? Groveling in their graves? Deep in their darkness, while you're living in your "Light" and happily leaving them alone there in it? Darkness has their minds dulled to the Truth and someone needs to run in to turn on the "Light"! Sleep is dulling, sleep is numbing, sleep is an oblivion to the world and all that goes around in it. You haven't a clue what's really happening in reality while you're sleeping. And something far worse than a threatening storm or a tornado's warning is coming to swallow till all of eternity all of those that are found still left in that sleep. Many of those are our loved ones! Why do I leave them there? Why don't I bother to run in my panic to wake them from their sleepiness?
What do we do with those sleeping around us? What do we do with our dead?
"Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine of you."...... "Wherefore He saith, awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee Light."
Jesus, when He came and walked this earth in human skin, went to the tomb of a dead man named Lazarus that had died four days earlier. We're told that He cried when He saw Mary crying. Then He went to the tomb and called Lazarus forth from it, raising him from the dead. And we're moved by the compassion that moved Jesus to do it. We are often told this part of the story, yet, it's the earlier verses that perhaps we should give more of our attention to? At which Jesus replies with, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes on Me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?"
Do you believe what Jesus said? That He is the resurrection and the life? And that he who believes on Him will live (even though he dies)? Do you believe that? I'm sure that most of those reading this does. Yet think of what Martha said of her brother, "I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day." That's a great feeling and there's great satisfaction and a fantastical peace that washes over us in being able to "know" that about our loved one that's died. Yet how many "dead people" are walking around us that won't be, because they're still sleeping in their slumbers while we leave them there because we don't bother to wake them?
Perhaps this verse carries two messages to us? One) we need ourselves to wake from our normal napping. And Two) we need to start turning on the "Light" to those around us instead of leaving them lying there. Forr, how will they wake if someone won't help to rouse them?
Again I wonder: What do we do with those sleeping around us? What do we do with our dead?