Like most people, I thrive on mountaintop experiences. That’s to say, I always feel very close to God and enjoy renewed hope and vision whenever I encounter spiritual refreshment. Conferences like VOICE always do wonders in challenging my faith and creating a passion in my heart that feels like it will last forever. The problem, however, is when reality sets in and I return back to the “valley” from my mountaintop experience. Instead of jumping into daily life with the same spiritual strength, I often find myself slipping into spiritual drowsiness.
Have you ever taken the time to look through Scripture to see the kinds of problems that popped up for those who slept? Noah fell asleep and his son came into his tent and brought shame to the family. While Samson slept, Delilah cut his hair which took away his strength. King Saul slept and David took his spear away from him. Sleepy Eutychus went to sleep and fell out of the window.
I’m realizing more and more that sleep can creep into our soul just as easily and quietly as it does to our body. My decision is that I can either give in to spiritual laziness, or I can be “sober and vigilant”—recognizing that the Enemy is waiting to pounce as soon as I indulge myself in spiritual sleep. Soldiers of Jesus Christ are faithful to stand fast even when things are boring and their spiritual life isn’t very exciting—especially a couple of months after VOICE when everything is back to normal!
While God never intended us to live life constantly within those spiritual mountaintop experiences, He also never intended for us to walk through life drowsily and halfheartedly. Jesus came so that we would “have life, and have it abundantly” (John 10:10). It’s kind of hard to experience that abundant life when I’m fighting off drowsiness day after day. William Gurnall, a pastor who lived over 400 years ago, challenged Christians to “busy yourselves in your Christian duties and spiritual drowsiness will flee.” Pretty good advice, huh?