Really? If you feel sleepy whilst attempting to read, then sleep. When you wake up, pick up the book and continue from where you left off. While you may want to think that it’s demonic to feel sleepy when you’re about to gain spiritual knowledge, I must tell you that it’s not.
We’ve been taught that the mind consists of our thoughts, will, and emotions. However, not many people are aware that the mind is classified into three parts; the conscious, unconscious and subconscious mind.
The conscious mind is approximately 10% of our mind. It is responsible for analyzing, thinking, making plans and short-term memory. The conscious mind helps us rationalize our actions. Without this, we cannot be sane. Every human being needs a structure and order in his or her every day life.
The conscious mind recognizes problems and finds solutions to fix those problems using willpower and our short-term memory. As these are only temporary, real internal change cannot happen in the conscious mind. True change comes from the subconscious mind, which takes up approximately 90% of our mind. The subconscious mind consists of long-term memory, emotions and feelings, habit and behavioural patterns, involuntary body functions, creativity, imagination, developmental stages, intuition, and beliefs.
The subconscious mind is the more powerful part of the mind. For instance, the long-term memory stores every piece of received data and associates them with emotions, feelings and beliefs. As humans, we are made out of our pasts. We think, see and do things based on our long-term memory and the associated feelings. Your default response or reaction to sudden threats are programmed here. You’re not going to stand still when a dog or a lion is coming to get you. Even if you recently learnt that you shouldn’t move when you see a dog, your body may have taken off already because the previous programming has not been erased.
Now you’d probably understand why you feel sleepy each time you try to read spiritual books. It’s not about the book, but how your subconscious mind responds to boredom. When you begin your Christian journey, engaging in spiritual things like reading, listening to gospel songs and even going to church may seem uninteresting and boring, especially if you’ve tasted the excitement in the world. If sleep is the feeling your brain sends to your body whenever you encounter something uninteresting, then you’d always feel sleepy. You’d also notice that if you drop the book and pick up an activity that interests you, the feeling of sleep will dissappear instantly.
The solution to this is to be determined. Sleep when the sleep comes, which I don’t expect to be more than ten to fifteen minutes, except in a case of fatigue. When you wake up, pick up the book and read. The moment you pick up the book to read again, your subconscious mind would store a new emotion to your long term memory. It may still send sleep when you get bored, but the moment you wake up, it will drive you to the book. This has happened to me many times. The moment I wake up, I continue from where I left off.
The unconscious mind is where dreams happen. Just because your body is asleep doesn’t mean your mind isn’t working. The subconscious mind is also connected to the unconscious mind. That’s why when someone is about to attack you in a dream, you’d instantly wake up in real life. It’s why you feel bad when you missed an opportunity that came in a dream.
Now that you know how to train your body to adjust to spiritual things, it’s also important to know that effective prayer is only possible by spiritual knowledge. Prayer is not just a conversation with God, it’s communication between God and man based on your knowledge of Him. This means that your prayer life can only be more effective if you know more about God.
Based on the things I know about God, ten minutes is too small a prayer time for me. So, don’t just desire to pray, desire to know the One you want to pray to. How do you even pray to a God you don’t know? If you know Him, the prayer will flow naturally.
I hope this has brought enlightenment to someone.
Remain ever blessed, in Jesus precious name!