Serving God through Improving Your Sleep

Serving Jesus
3 min readJul 10, 2023


Sleep is not only for our own comfort, but also increases our efficiency in serving God, and may even enable us to live longer, so we can love others to the best of our ability. From that perspective, sleep is actually productive.

There is an opposite extreme of excess, but for those of us who want to be productive all the time, there is a risk of sacrificing sleep in hopes that we can accomplish more. However, sleep can be just as important to health as exercise, so it should not be neglected. Generally, it is said that 6 hours is a minimum for health, and slightly more is ideal, not only physically but also mentally; and ultimately we are more productive by keeping sleep in a healthy balance.

Maintaining our health is not an end in itself, but a means to an end: to be efficient as we serve God.

Treating Insomnia

Applying these tips will most likely improve your ability to fall asleep; don’t simply read, but copy and add the points to your daily routine!

1. Exercise regularly, to promote sleep. Just be done with exercise at least 2 hours before your bedtime, so you won’t have too much energy when you are trying to sleep.

2. Avoid white light especially from screens at night; either stop looking at screens 2 hours before bed, or use a screen filter that is tinted orange or red (Twilight for phone, F.lux for computer). Limit sunlight when trying to sleep (get thick curtains if necessary).

3. Have a regular bedtime, to support your circadian rhythm.

4. Prevent being woken up. At night, if you have to keep your phone on for calls for specific family members in case of emergency, you can still keep it on “do not disturb” and make exceptions. Also go to bed early enough that you won’t have to use an alarm.

5. Write out your thoughts if there is too much on your mind. Or to be faster, make voice recordings with your phone.

6. Turn down your heater, to make sure your room is not too warm.

7. Practice progressive muscle relaxation.

8. Listen to something at a fast pace and then wind down to a slower pace. For example, listen to the Bible on 2x speed, then 1.5, then 1, then .75 in order to help your brain waves to slow down. When you are falling asleep, your brain transitions from beta and alpha waves to theta waves. Starting with a faster pace and gradually winding down (within about 20 minutes) is better than listening to the slow speed at first.

9. Visualize or read to get your brain into a passive state rather than active. Avoid remembering the day, planning the next day, thinking of inspiring ideas, thinking of something entertaining, and of course worrying. Reading can put your mind into a passive state, although if you use a phone, you’ll need an orange filter, as in point 2 above. And when you are reading the Bible, even if it takes a long time to fall asleep, you can still know that your time is being put to good use.

10. Use 4–7–8 breathing.

11. Get up and start over if you’re not asleep within 30 minutes of lying down. If you’ve already calmed down but you are not sleepy, you will probably continue to be stuck awake if you continue lying down. Start your sleep routine again from the beginning, because the decline can kickstart your body into falling asleep.

Using Your Awake Time

If you have higher cortisol than the average person, you might practice all the above steps and still take a long time to fall asleep, or wake up in the middle of the night and find it hard to fall back asleep after only a few hours.

The time doesn’t have to be wasted. Make the most of it by reading the Bible, listening to music that glorifies Jesus and helps you surrender to Him, or praying through a prayer list (to keep focused). Remember that if it takes longer than 30 minutes and you are still “tired but not sleepy,” get up and do something for a while. However, for the time that you are trying to fall asleep, keep your focus on drawing closer to Jesus and interceding for others to know Him. Even though it might not look productive outwardly, you are devoting your time to Jesus and living with an eternal perspective, and that is worthwhile.




Serving Jesus

I’m a follower of Jesus, wife, and mother, and I share the gospel through online ministry.