The Power of a Nap

Life post-college was really difficult for me. I was jobless. I was single. I had no idea what I wanted to do. I felt like there was a bar set for life – and somehow, I was falling short.

So I set out, determined to meet all the expectations set by the world. I was to be an independent woman with job security, a retirement plan, a consistent workout routine, and extracurricular activities every night of the week!

I was running, feeling like if I stopped I”d lose the race. But life got even busier to the point that it didn”t really even seem like life anymore; it seemed a bit more like death. I fought anxiety, panic attacks, depression, constant stomachaches, chest pain, and a feeling of being completely disconnected from humanity.

But something happened….

Last year, we had a guest speaker at church who taught on the Sabbath. She talked about three things we should do on the Sabbath:  First and foremost, rest. Then include something that feeds you spiritually and do something you delight in.

That”s all! Three things, and the first and most important thing was to take a God-ordained nap!

For years God had been whispering, beckoning, begging me to come and rest with Him a while.

“Sit, Kaylee. Kaylee, just sit,” He”d call.

“Not now, God!” I”d shout back, “I”m busy.” (Sometimes I was even too busy to even tell him that!) But what my heart was really saying was “God, I have no idea who I am and who you”ve called me to be. I”m exhausted and feel like I bring no worth or value to this world. And so, if you don”t mind, I”m going to just keep running.”

Thankfully God knew me better than I knew myself, and so He introduced me to the Sabbath.

Lots has changed since I graduated from college:  I recently married a wonderful man, Dan, and this Sabbath message has become a centerpiece of our life together. Some Sundays require more rest, while others hold more time for delight, but they are all bring us closer to God and to each other.

And something has happened – we”ve become more peaceful and content people. I have less anxiety. The panic attacks are less frequent. I have no depression. My stomach is on the road to recovery! But most of all, I”m starting to feel re-connected to humanity.

People have noticed a difference in us, and when they ask we simply say, “Well, we”ve started doing this Sabbath thing….”

So now, once a week, I sit. I sleep. I totally and completely nap my little heart out! And it is when I rest that I”ve found that God doesn”t ask me what I”ve done or what I”m going to do. He doesn”t ask me to prove myself to Him. It is in the silence and rest of the Sabbath that I am reminded that I am who God has made me and that in itself is good news.

By Kaylee Hendrickson

The Sleeths first met Kaylee Hendrickson while filming the Creation Care segment of Start: Becoming a Good Samaritan .  With Kaylee and her husband Dan expecting their first child, Sabbath naps are now more important than ever!