I found this tucked away in my drafts and felt like you might need this as we wrap up the year.
My kid is refusing sleep.
For one week now, Henry has decided to protest naps all together. Nights are perfect – 11-12 hours without a peep but we are fighting for even 30 min during the day. What changed for us?
He rolled over.
Once babies have the neck and ab strength to roll over from their backs, they need their arms free to push themselves into a proper position to breathe comfortably while sleeping on their bellies. He rolled over on his own last weekend which means he can no longer sleep swaddled with his arms contained like a burrito baby. I’m kicking myself for not working with him on sleeping without a swaddle during the day like we had at night but he wasn’t trying to roll over before and then out of nowhere, he figured it out. Now Henry can’t rest during nap time because of his new found arm freedom.
Can I share what God has been teaching me as we have wrestled to get this kid down for a nap?
We don’t know what to do with our freedom either.
God has given man free will and because of the fall in Genesis 3, our free will leads us to a life enslaved to sin and the consequences of sin both here on earth and for eternity. We are chained by shame and condemnation. And then Jesus steps in.
When we accept Jesus and give our life to him, he breaks the chains of sin and saves us from the eternal consequences. We are free! No more shame! No more condemnation!
When I got saved at nine years old and until I found true, gospel community in college, I was confident in Jesus as my savior but I’d never allowed him to be Lord of my life. Lordship means that we submit our lives and the free will that comes with it to God’s authority and to God’s will. It’s through that obedience of submitting our dreams, our plans, our agenda and even the freedom that God has given all of human creation under His authority that provides us the abundant life we are promised. It’s how we find our rest.
In the same way that Henry doesn’t know what to do with his new found freedom and it has caused him to be restless, the same can be said for us. I was restless before I had a community of believers around me modeling for me what it looked like to submit my life to the Lordship of Jesus. My shoulders were heavy from carrying the weight of the would because I had never seen true sabbath rest – releasing control and carving out time to dedicate to the Lord’s restorative power – being modeled from a body of believers.
Submission feels restrictive and we long for freedom and so we often choose to go our own way rather than walking in the direction God is leading us – which often leads to sacrifice, yuck. We try to maintain control of our lives, control of our freedom, and that leads to being exhausted and trapped into the confines of our own abilities – which are severely lacking when compared to God. Yet God calls us to come and lay down our control, our striving, our sin, our shame and HE will provide us rest.
Lordship is the tricky part of following Jesus because it’s the most important to faithfully living for Jesus and the least modeled in Christian circles – we love Jesus the savior but we struggle making Jesus our Lord, our boss, the one who knows best. And the truth is that being our own boss leads us to be trapped in the webs we weave ourselves in the midst of our fight for freedom/control.
When we walk in obedience to Christ, filtering our freedom through the lens of how God is calling us to live and allowing him to take his rightful place as Lord of our lives, He will give us rest.