Common Sense

Common Sense

Someone has asked, “Why do we feel sleepy when we go to read the Bible? How can we stop that?” My first response is, “The Devil did NOT make me do it.” And there may be several physical issues going on that your doctor might be able to help you with. I am not a physician and, therefore, am unable to give any kind of advice that will help.

However, I am a Sleep Apnea patient and have been sleeping with a CPAP machine for more than 30 years. My opinion is that you might want to ask your personal physician to refer you to a Sleep Clinic and allow them to give you some help.

Now, back to the question. I find it somewhat disturbing that some faithful Christians sometimes have a tendency to blame the Devil for everything seemingly bad. Let us not give him credit for things that simply are too difficult for him. What we know is that we do live in a fallen world in which ‘stuff’ simply happens. This is a simplistic answer, I know, but we must seek to place blame where it may belong and not give incorrect honor where none is due.

To some degree, perhaps, if we are falling asleep while reading the Bible we must accept some of that responsibility and do some simple things that may help. But, ‘the Devil made me do it” syndrome is not the solution. And there certainly is no Bible verse solution for this. However, we can go to the Bible to find directives for Common Sense values.

Job is the prime example of an honorable man chosen by God and allowed to be faced with Satan. His confrontation was far more grievous than the Covid-19 virus, but there were some positives for God allowed Satan to attack Job with a limitation, “But Satan answered the Lord, “Skin for skin! Indeed, a man will give up all that he has to save his life. But extend your hand and strike his bone and his flesh, and he will no doubt curse you to your face!” So the Lord said to Satan, “All right, he is in your power; only preserve his life.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and he afflicted Job with a malignant ulcer from the soles of his feet to the top of his head.” Job 2:4-7.

As I was ‘studying’ the question as my Great Uncle Bob would say, I think God pointed me to something; because God is Sovereign and in complete control, “Is it not also possible that God is responsible for allowing you to become drowsy while reading the Bible in order for you to focus more upon Him than the reading of His Word?” This does not mean that reading the Bible is less important, but rather we must focus upon the ‘why’ of our reading. Do we do so solely to say to ourselves, “Self, I have read the Bible for today and I can ‘check’ this off my routine ‘to-do list.’” We should read the Bible to focus upon Him and not our ‘to-do’ list. Just a thought.

Job lost everything he had, but remained faithful to God. His focus was upon the Creator and not upon the created and God blessed him because of his faithfulness. “So the Lord restored what Job had lost after he prayed for his friends, and the Lord doubled all that had belonged to Job.” Job 42:10.

The ‘Why’ Is More Important Than the ‘Doing’

Sometimes the process of ‘doing’ a project is more important than the result. However, this may not be so for our Daily Bible Reading. Do we ‘do’ or read the Bible in order to ‘check-off’ our daily ‘to-do’ list or do we read the Bible in order to know our Lord better and to understand how we are to live a life pleasing to Him? The ‘why’ is far more important than simply ‘doing.’  Jesus said it this way, “Then Jesus said to those Judeans who had believed him, “If you continue to follow my teaching, you are really my disciples and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32. We learn to follow His teachings by reading and learning His Word. We do not learn His teaching simply to read them in order to check-off our ‘to-do’ list. This is Common Sense.

Jesus is Lord.

About Bob Williford

Conservative Southern Baptist pastor, missionary, and personal evangelist. An avid supporter of Texas Tech Athletics. Enjoy oil painting, writing and woodworking. My wife, children, and grandchildren are my joy. Reading and writing are great for relaxing......
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