The Baptist Hour…
I’m sitting in a cold darkened room writing feverishly. It’s a desperate race—trying to communicate, to beg someone to help me, to clear the muddiness of my mind, the fog, the fear, before deep hypothermia sets in, and I lose consciousness. Doesn’t anyone know how hard this is? Doesn’t anyone care? No! They’ve already lost consciousness themselves, and I am utterly alone.
No, this isn’t a horrible dream. It’s the Baptist Hour. The long tendrils of sleep are curling around me, slipping into my mind, pulling my body temperature down, and enticing me to lower my head onto the pillow at the other end of the couch, whispering, “You’re sleepy; it’s cozy; come with us to dreamland and while away the hours!
NO! I must resist. After all, I have a blog to get out, a sequel to finish, bookmarks to design. NO! You cannot persuade me. I try to reach for help; I call to my loving children, begging them to come rescue me from the temptation. My efforts only result in a pillow in my face. My children are so rude. On the other hand, I now have comfy pillows to use.
NO! I will resist. I cannot give in to the temptation. I have things to say, wisdom to impart, anecdotes to share! I must, for the sake of my readers, continue to write until this article is done!
My Parents Did It, Why Not Me?
For those of you who are Baptists, or go to church on Sunday mornings, you may have heard of this phenomenon—the “Baptist Hour.” The term is not exactly accurate, though. It’s more like “Baptist Hours.” (Sounds like the title of a movie.) It’s that time on Sunday afternoon when you’ve been to church, headed home or to a restaurant, eaten a meal, and then most adults—usually parents of small children—sink into a coma while their adorable little rascals ransack the house (Sounds a little bit like Thanksgiving).
Because my husband pastors a church that is a substantial distance from our home, the church has kindly outfitted a room in the Sunday school building with a couch and a couple of recliners so that we don’t have to go home Sunday afternoons. This arrangement saves gas and wear and tear on the car, and we greatly appreciate it. However, being out at the church all day, we miss the usual comforts of home. So what do we do? We sleep all afternoon, though my husband sets his alarm to go off around five, so he can leave early to finish preparations for the evening service. The disturbing thing for me is that this Sunday afternoon nap has become a habit. And since our daughters have started coming to our church to help minister, they are falling into the same habit.
Sleeping the afternoon away!
We are literally sleeping our afternoon away. And if we don’t sleep, we get just a little bit cranky.
“What was that, sweetie? No, my darling daughter, you didn’t have to punch your sister for stealing your pillow.”
What does this have to do with you? Nothing really. This is my problem, not yours. I keep thinking, “I could be doing this,” or “I could be doing that.” I have a hard time letting myself get a little bit of rest because I am a lot like my mother whose mission in life was to constantly be busy doing something. I’m not sure but there must be a pill or a twelve step program somewhere for people like me.
So what is wrong with taking a nap! Absolutely nothing. On occasion, our bodies need the renewal of rest, even sleep. God himself rested after creating all things in six days. If He weren’t God, I’d say He deserved a nap after that. Did God need sleep? Of course not. He’s God. He set an example of how we should take time to come aside and rest, renew, and to spend time thinking about all the wonderful things He has done for us.
Rest is very good!
God is good, all the time. And all the time, God is good. It may not seem so—we may wonder, but He has a plan, and He cares for us. No matter what situation we find ourselves in, good or bad, God loves us, cares for us, walks with us, and never abandons us. He meets our spiritual and physical needs.
“By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day He rested from all His work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested from all the work of creating that He had done” (Genesis 2: 2-3).
There was even a time when Jesus put his disciples in a boat and sent them on ahead of Him across the Sea of Galilee to other side while He dismissed the crowds. Then He went into the mountains to pray. I would like to believe that communing with his father must have given him rest because, toward dawn, He took a stroll on the water across the Sea of Galilee to catch up with the disciples’ boat before they reached the other shore. (Matthew 14:22-33 A very exciting story. Check it out.)
So if God condones rest, then sweet dreams as you take the plunge into the Baptist Hour or whatever you call it. In the meantime, God bless and keep you all.
Chapter 2 Samantha’s Story (Click the link, then tap the chapter)