The Rest of The Way Posts

AM I WASTING MY WAKEFULNESS?
Thursday, October 20, 2022 by Leona Choy

Was King David biphasic? Probably. This was true of most people in the ancient world. Here is some of what he wrote about his night habits (various translations). (Psalm 63:6,7 ) If I’m sleepless at midnight, I spend the hours in grateful reflection. On my bed, I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings. I think about you, God, before I go to sleep, and my thoughts turn to you during the night. (Psalm 16:7) I will bless the Lord who counsels me; he gives me wisdom in the night. He tells me what to do. (Psalm 3:5) Then I lay down and slept in peace and woke up safely, for the Lord was watching over me. (Psalm 4:8) I will lie down and sleep peacefully, for you, Lord, make me safe and secure. (Psalm 42:8) Every day, you are kind, and at night you give me a song as my prayer to you, the God of my life.

I'm not referring to gender or sexual orientation. The topic is sleep. Today's ideal, so we are told, is for everyone to get 7-8 consecutive hours of nocturnal sleep all at one time each night. And that interrupted sleep is not healthy.

Just what is the meaning of this ominous-sounding word that makes you think something is wrong with you? Do you have some disease? Biphasic simply means segmented sleep or divided night sleep into two sleep sessions with a peaceful, wakeful, creative, productive time between. It commonly includes a nap, a short period of sleep in the daytime. Some call it a “power nap” of whatever length your body and mind require.

It consists of going to sleep early at night, awakening in the post-midnight hours, and after a peaceful/productive wakeful time, returning to bed for the second period of good sleep until morning.

Segmented sleep is not a new idea. Benjamin Franklin practiced it as did many prominent people and most ordinary people. Blame Thomas Edison and his discovery of electricity that launched the industrial revolution and the fast-paced, harried lifestyle we “enjoy” today. It was normal to get up for a couple of hours in the middle of the night.

What did people do during that wakened interval? According to historian/researcher Roger Ekirch, author of At Day's Close: Night in Times Past, “In pre-electricity times, people spent that free post-midnight time praying, smoking, visiting neighbors, chopping wood, stoking the wood stove, starting the morning porridge, or engaging in sexual activity. Then they went back to sleep until morning.”

These days some people may still be hardwired to follow that leftover habit from our ancestors of a split sleeping schedule. They use the middle-of-the-night awake period as a creative time to think, read, meditate, pray, work, reflect, and interpret dreams that are more vivid to remember at that hour than in the morning. Apparently, that interrupted sleep period was a favorite time for scholars and poets to write uninterrupted.

In medieval England, the two periods of night sleep were called "first sleep" (beauty sleep, and early slumber) and "second sleep" The Jews and Romans observed a kind of nocturnal segmentation called “watches of the night.” There are biblical references to these, which consisted of 3-hour portions starting with 6 in the evening with sunset and ending with 6 o'clock sunrise. Recall how Jesus awoke and “a great while before day went to the mountain to pray.” He did His water-walking during the third watch of the night. Mary Magdalene came to Jesus' sepulcher “as it began to dawn.” Jesus had already risen from the dead.

What's the bottom line? What does this have to do with me—or you?

I've been a happy, practicing biphasic for many years without realizing what was going on. I usually sleep a sound four hours first. Perhaps God assigned an angel to wake me up for this special rich and precious private listening encounter to obtain the Holy Spirit's guidance and direction for the day ahead. (A secret the Psalmist David already knew—obviously, there was no electricity in his palace.) In the stillness of the night I let God know, as young Samuel did in the Old Testament story, “Speak, Lord, your servant is listening.” Then Jesus knows I'm tuned to the right channel.

Not in an audible voice, but sometimes the Lord reminds me whom to pray for, to call, or write. I receive topics for my website blog posts and often compose much of the content in my mind. I'm getting better at capturing my each-night dreams before they evaporate. I've learned to use the take-notes section on my cell phone to jot down in the darkness brief reminder words or speak into my cell microphone whatever I am “hearing” or being impressed or instructed.

SO HOW ABOUT YOU? Are you struggling to get back to sleep after a bathroom trek? Does your body really need a consecutive 8 hours of sleep? Do you simply toss in bed and worry or rehash events of the day or fears of the future? Are you missing something? Is Someone waiting for you to settle down quietly and listen to Him? Are you wasting precious spiritual rendezvous time?

Some complain that they never hear from God. “My sheep hear My voice....” Jesus stated that as a fact. Are you listening to Him in the night hours? Have you notified the Lord that you are available and tuned in? Whether or not you are biphasic, why not give God a chance to whisper His secrets to YOU in the night hours?



 

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Comments

Jessica From US At 11/5/2022 1:55:37 PM

This is beautiful. Encouraging for so many reasons. Never read an article about sleep in this biblical context. Thank you so much. God bless you

Reply by: Leona Choy

We are fearfully and wonderfully made by our Creator,each uniquely. Let's go with the flow.

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Leona Choy
12/28/2019

2020 MY RENEWED EAGLE YEAR
Leona Choy
12/26/2019

Post Surgery Report
Leona Choy
12/3/2019

SURGERY ENCORE
Leona Choy
11/23/2019

“You Have the Right to Remain Silent”
Leona Choy
10/31/2019

WHO IS SHAKING MY TREE?
Leona Choy
10/30/2019

WHO IS THE BOSS OF ME?
Leona Choy
10/15/2019

LORD, MOVE MY MOUNTAIN!
Leona Choy
10/13/2019

ANOTHER WAITING ROOM
Leona Choy
10/11/2019

DON'T BE SHEEPISH
Leona Choy
10/10/2019

THE VALUE OF SELF-TALK
Leona Choy
9/28/2019

LASER PRAYER
Leona Choy
9/27/2019

THANKS FOR THE MEMORY
Leona Choy
9/12/2019

CARRY ME, FATHER
Leona Choy
9/5/2019

MY PERSONAL SPIRITUAL WORKOUT
Leona Choy
9/4/2019

PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
Leona Choy
9/1/2019

Lessons from My Cup
Leona Choy
8/20/2019

STRAW & THE CAMEL'S BACK
Leona Choy
8/7/2019

BECOMING MORE "FRUITY"
Leona Choy
7/10/2019

CREATIVE ENCOUNTERS
Leona Choy
7/3/2019

PITCHING IT RIGHT
Leona Choy
6/30/2019

“WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU GROW UP?”
Leona Choy
6/25/2019

34580 and COUNTING
Leona Choy
6/18/2019

MOUNTAINS AND MOLEHILLS
Leona Choy
6/14/2019

CHEERLEADING
Leona Choy
6/6/2019

HANDS ON THE PLOW
Leona Choy
5/22/2019

WAITING FOR GRADUATION DAY
Leona Choy
5/17/2019

I THINK BOOKS
Leona Choy
5/13/2019

ONLY TALK WITH YOUR MOUTH FULL!
Leona Choy
5/4/2019

HO-HUM FAITH
Leona Choy
4/18/2019

BREATHTAKING THOUGHTS
Leona Choy
4/7/2019

TOO MUCH ON MY PLATE?
Leona Choy
3/31/2019

EARTH SUIT vs SPACE SUIT: Increasing Tension
Leona Choy
3/4/2019

AVOIDING A SPIRITUAL "OOPS!"
Leona Choy
3/1/2019

PURSUING WISDOM
Leona Choy
2/19/2019

A THORNY MATTER
Leona Choy
2/15/2019

A SOMEWHAT GRUMPY CHAT WITH GOD
Leona Choy
2/12/2019

A FISH STORY
Leona Choy
2/8/2019

LET'S EAT NOODLES TOGETHER!
Leona Choy
1/21/2019

SATISFIED--A SECRET TO SHARE
Leona Choy
1/11/2019

STILL RUNNING
Leona Choy
12/29/2018

RESISTANCE TO ASSISTANCE
Leona Choy
12/6/2018

CHALLENGE OF THE FOURTH QUARTER
Leona Choy
11/26/2018

KEEPING A TRADITION
Leona Choy
11/15/2018

PUBLISHING FUND PROGRESS
Leona Choy
11/5/2018

"GOING STEADY" WITH MY "SUGAR CANE"
Leona Choy
11/3/2018

A SHOUT-OUT FOR A NEW BUTTERFLY
Leona Choy
10/31/2018

THANKSGIVING IN OCTOBER
Leona Choy
10/7/2018

REPEAT OFFENDERS
Leona Choy
9/30/2018

SHINING WHEN YOUR BATTERY IS LOW
Leona Choy
9/21/2018

I DESERVE IT...DESERVE IT NOT....
Leona Choy
9/13/2018

WHAT'S IN A NAME?
Leona Choy
9/10/2018

WAITING FOR GOD'S DUE TIME
Leona Choy
9/3/2018

STONES AND COVERUPS AND HOLY EARS
Leona Choy
8/31/2018

IT'S ALL ABOUT SHOES
Leona Choy
8/29/2018

THE HOLY SPIRIT IS MY CELL TOWER
Leona Choy
8/27/2018

REJUVENATION GOD'S WAY
Leona Choy
8/17/2018

STUCK IN THE MUD?
Leona Choy
8/13/2018

TWINKLE TWINKLE LITTLE STAR
Leona Choy
8/8/2018

WHEN'S A GOOD TIME TO "EXULT"?
Leona Choy
7/30/2018

Survey For the Calendar-Challenged
Leona Choy
7/25/2018

Destiny Decisions
Leona Choy
7/19/2018

BEDROOM SLIPPERS OR HIKING BOOTS?
Leona Choy
7/18/2018

Hurrah for the Prepper Bridesmaids!
Leona Choy
7/13/2018

THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
Leona Choy
7/10/2018

BARNACLES
Leona Choy
6/5/2018