It’s incredible what a difference a good night of sleep makes in your attitude, your ability to concentrate, and overall health. Last week I vacationed at my sister’s house in California. The warm days were deliciously offset by the air conditioned house at night. Knowing how easily I get cold, however, my sweet sis had layered my bed with soft, warm blankets. Each night after long walks, shopping, pickle ball, movie times, and lots of girl talk, I snuggled into my pillow-top bed for a goodnight call with my husband and drifted into blissful sleep.

You know you’ve really rested when you wake up refreshed, a smile on your face, and ready to face the day.

Contrast that with fitful nights in a hospital chair next to a loved one, or a vacation cabin with lumpy mattress and pillows, hotel rooms with paper thin walls and noisy neighbors, a night on a leaky air mattress, or with a crying baby. Not to mention sleeplessness caused by pain, worry, loneliness, or itchy bug bites.

I recently read Isaiah 28:20 and it perfectly describes the frustration of sleeplessness:

The bed is too short to stretch out on,
the blanket too narrow to wrap around you.

We can all relate to this word picture. A while ago I was too tired to drive home from my parents’ after visiting for the day, so they offered to let me stay the night. I didn’t want to be a bother, so I volunteered to sleep on the loveseat. Even as short as I am, I could not get comfortable on it and finally plunked the cushions on the floor where I could stretch out. Thankfully, the blankets were plenty large to wrap up in, even with all my tossing and turning. That definitely would have added to the torture.
This verse is a description of us when we try to find satisfaction or spiritual rest anyplace other than a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. Our jobs, boyfriend or girlfriend, husband, wife, children, money, toys, church, substances, power, prophets, popularity – none of it will give us rest. Every time we try to lean back, the bed of these false gods will be too short. We will feel cramped and ill at ease. Like an insufficient blanket, these things won’t cover our sins; they will leave us cold, exposed, and dissatisfied.

Jesus has a generous offer for us, quoted in Matthew 11:28-29:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”

If you have not yet responded to this invitation, I encourage you to think about it, search it out. Talk to God about what you need. Life is full of difficult circumstances, but you can still find deep, satisfying rest in Jesus. When you’re in a place of pain and uncertainty, you can trust Him to take care of you and lead you day by day. Your soul will find rest like you’ve never imagined. At the end of the day you will lie down and be at rest, and in the morning He will give you energy to enter the day.