An increasing medical concern is insomnia. Eric J. Olson, M.D. states, “Lack of sleep can affect your immune system. Studies show that people who don't get quality sleep or enough sleep are more likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus…Long-term lack of sleep also increases your risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart and blood vessel (cardiovascular) disease.” Insomnia has also been linked to increased risk of stroke, asthma attacks, seizures, sensitivity to pain, inflammation and obesity.
While patients can adjust their environment such as eliminating caffeine in the late afternoon, darkening their bedrooms, and having a comfortable bed; often the problem is emotional. Worry, relationship issues, unresolved anger, financial problems are just a few of the issues that can keep us awake at night. This is where the therapy of the Bible can be so helpful.
Scripture effectively addresses these emotional issues in a way that can bring calm, rest and resolution. The following passages can be helpful:
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7)
Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? (Matthew 6:26-27)
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. (Psalm 23:1-3)
“He gives His beloved sleep.” (Psalm 127:2)
Some, who have long-term or more persistent insomnia, may need individualized therapy – which has proven to be very effective in helping people solve their insomnia problem. In addition, many are able to stop talking sleep medication.
Whether you have a major or minor sleep problem, it can seriously affect your health and happiness. Don’t “just accept it.” Get the help you need.
James S. Danner is Pastor of Grace Community Church (GCCValdosta.org) and Counselor with Grace Counseling (GraceValdosta.com)