Monday, July 16, 2007

Sleepless Nights and Spiritual Battle

Both my daughters were born with their mother's drugs and their father's eyes. Claire, the eldest, was born on eight hours of Pitocin, which sent her into the world functioning at a resting heart rate of 237. Margot emerged at a modest 22 beats per minute, compliments of a dulling prescription of Vicodin.

July 18th marks Margot's one month birthday; she already sleeps better than her older sister did into the second year. The difference could be drug related, the fact that her parents are far less paranoid about imminent death, or a host of thirty other causes found in thirty separate books which have 'Getting Your Baby To Sleep' somewhere in the title. We've given up searching for the perfect method and gone on to retirement planning.

Margot's inertia has been a blessing: Sunday through Friday nights she sneaks through the night with only a single feeding. Then she's back to sleep before my dream completely fades.

But something happens on Saturday nights--those sweet, dormant hours before I preach--which I hesitated to identify. Margot was waking (2:00 a.m.), staring (3:00 a.m.), and fussing (4:00 a.m.) in two-hour blocks. At first I called it coincidence. After three weeks in a row, though, I'm confident the matter is spiritual.

Sleep is my safeguard against insanity. When I lack it, I feel irritable as father, lazy as a husband, clumsy as a preacher, petty as a Christian, and irresponsible as an American consumer (e.g. QVC).

Spiritual attacks on Saturday nights threaten my performance (meant militarily) during Sunday battles. And yet, the fact that I'm being wakened suggests that the church in Leesburg poses a challenge to the Enemy...because we preach Jesus.

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