I can think of three distinct classes when I've fallen asleep.
1. In Incarnational Youth Ministry class junior year in college. It was an afternoon class, and it was after my Coaching Soccer (yeah, it was awesome) class every week in the Spring. I'm not the most in shape person ever, so naturally, after running around I was tired. I fell asleep in the middle of my professor's lectures a couple of times, and not because I did not find the discussions/topics interesting. And yet, this professor will hold my nap habits over my head to this day
2. Again, in college, in my Life of Jesus class (yes, I realize the irony. I've been in vocational ministry, but kept falling asleep in religious classes? Yeah, I'm confused, too). This is similar to the first. My sophomore year of college, I decided that I wanted to get a regular work out routine in the morning. Early morning. I used to competitively swim a long time ago, so I figured swimming in the morning at the local pool was a good way to boost my metabolism. Well, Life of Jesus was at 7:40 in the morning (my alma mater is nuts). Without fail, every time I swim in the morning, go eat a big breakfast, get to class, my body shuts down halfway through.
3. Every. Single. Algebra 2. Class. In high school. Freshman year. I'm in the back corner of a class run by a strict Lebanese, short, stalky, mustached man. And every time I fell asleep, the same thing happens. He would sneak over to my desk, in the middle of lecture, with a ruler, and slap my desk to jolt me awake. I'm really surprised I didn't fail Algebra 2.
"Pay attention and turn your ear to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach, for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips. So that your trust may be in the LORD, I teach you today, even you." Proverbs 22:17-19As I mentioned yesterday we're tempted to always take the seemingly easy decision. In this chapter of Proverbs, this section of Scripture is leading into the "Thirty Sayings Of The Wise." To this point, we've gotten the gauntlet in the comparison between Wisdom and Folly.
We get it. Don't be dumb.
And when we get to the Thirty Sayings, they're written like commands. Lots of imperatives.
But like those times I've fallen asleep in class, we tend to fall asleep in life. We expect life to engage us. Really, I think life engages us enough.
Proverbs is not only about learning from Wisdom and trusting in God's will, but we are personally responsible to pay attention! We need to be prepared when life hits us in the face.
We may be more technologically advanced, but it's a little embarrassing how history has shown that we have the ability to pay attention for long periods of time. We distract ourselves constantly (no, this blog is not a distraction).
Paying attention doesn't have to be just our job or our school. It means everything in life:
- Are we taking heed to the emotional health of our fellow man?
- Do we see how our decisions effect those close to us, like your spouse/significant other, children, parents?
There's a lot in life we miss when we doze off. I'm guilty of this all the time. But thankfully, this doesn't define me. Jesus has given me His righteousness in exchange for our short-comings; our sin.
I think we can start paying attention to that.