After a year and a bit of blogging, a “4th Point” post that consistently gets lots of hits each month is the one I wrote about falling asleep while praying in which I quote from Kevin G. Harney’s book Seismic Shifts. Brennan Manning also has something to say on the subject in his book The Furious Longing of God.
After referring to the intimacy and trust that’s implicit in calling God our “Abba” (“Father”), Mr. Manning writes…
Is your own personal prayer life characterized by the simplicity, childlike candour, boundless trust, and easy familiarity of a little one crawling up in Daddy’s lap? An assured knowing that the daddy doesn’t care if the child falls asleep, starts playing with toys, or even starts chatting with little friends, because the daddy knows the child has essentially chosen to be with him for that moment? Is that the spirit of your interior prayer life? (p. 44)
Granted, if we consistently fall asleep while praying because talking with God is boring or we consign Him only the final few drowsy moments of a too-busy day, we need to re-examine our praying. However, if we fall asleep in the loving and familiar embrace of our Father’s love, well, what father won’t be filled with deep satisfaction and joy?