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Shaking the sleep out of sermons

Last week, I fell asleep at my computer while working on a sermon. When I woke up, the screen had a long line of "Ks" across it because my finger was still pressing down on the key.

A quick edit and the problem was corrected, but I remained concerned about the sermon. After all, if I fell asleep while writing it, what are the people going to do when I preach it?

Falling asleep in church has been a favorite pastime for many. Their patron saint is Eutychus (the young man who fell out of an upstairs window during one of Paul's lengthy messages, Acts 20:7-12). I once had a man fall asleep and tumble off of his chair into the aisle during a sermon. Does that rate my preaching skills up there with the Apostle Paul?

Sleeping in church is not a terrible thing, but giving in to too much spiritual slumber can be disastrous. Proverbs 6:10-11 warns us: "A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest-and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man."

This could apply to those who would rather slumber than maintain a spiritual vigilance. Instead of keeping spiritually alert, we allow our senses to dull and nap our way into corruption. Remember, if you snooze, you lose.

Is it time to listen to the Apostle Paul's advice? "Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." (Ephesians 5:14).