Throughout the Gospels and in the Epistles are frequent reminders to watchfulness. Christians are to be known by our love (Jn. 13:35), but the adjective of watchful should hang around the neck of the Christian. By watchfulness over your own soul and the soul’s of those under your care, you demonstrate Christian charity.
But being watchful is wearisome. Anyone who’s had to pull an all-nighter knows the magnetic pull of the pillow, the siren-song of the sheets, beckoning to yield to the weight of your eyelids. It takes force of will to keep alert and not give way to the weariness. In warfare, one of the most vital duties is that of the night watchman. To fall asleep on the watch was punishable with death.
Now, God doesn’t ask you to be superhuman. He provides for our daily bread; or we could say our daily rest. After all, He’s the one who blessed one day a week as a day of spiritual and physical refreshment. But in the battle against sin, the Christian does not have the luxury of sheathing his sword.
There isn’t a “break” from God’s command to put to death the varmints of jealousy, lust, drunkenness, anger, and idolatry that try to breach the wall of your life, your family, your church, your city. He summons you to put on the armor of light, and do battle. He calls you to follow the example of Eleazar who once smote the Philistines until his hand was weary, and then his hand clave unto the sword, and yet he still fought on.
Have you wearied of being hospitable? Have you grown tired of having such strict entertainment standards? Have you folded your hands in indifference about the discontentment you harbor towards your job, your wife, your kids? The Word of God to you is this, “Be watchful.”
Remember, God knows that we often grow weary in the fight. That’s why He sent us the Holy Spirit, who does not grow weary and gives us strength to stay steadfast, to confess when we fail, and to comfort our hearts with the assurance of God’s great mercy and forgiveness.