To Have Regular Hours


 for Sleep.

--How prevalent is the habit of turning day into night, and night into day. Many youth sleep soundly in the morning, when they should be up with the early singing birds and be stirring when all nature is awake.    

     Some youth are much opposed to order and discipline. They do not respect the rules of the home by rising at a regular hour. They lie in bed some hours after daylight, when everyone should be astir. They burn the midnight oil, depending upon artificial light to supply the place of the light that nature has provided at seasonable hours. In so doing they not only waste precious opportunities, but cause additional expense. But in almost every case the plea is made, "I cannot get through my work; I have something to do; I cannot retire early." . . . The precious habits of order are broken, and the moments thus idled away in the early morning set things out of course for the whole day.  

     Our God is a God of order, and He desires that His children shall will to bring themselves into order and under His discipline. Would it not be better, therefore, to break up this habit of turning night into day, and the fresh hours of the morning into night? If the youth would form habits of regularity and order, they would improve in health, in spirits, in memory, and in disposition.  CG 111-112


     It is the duty of all to observe strict rules in their habits of life. This is for your own good, dear youth, both physically and morally. When you rise in the morning, take into consideration, as far as possible, the work you must accomplish during the day.

     God has given us all something to do; and in the discharge of various duties, our lives will be made useful, and we shall be blessed. “Not slothful in business,” [Romans 12:11.] is the injunction of the apostle Paul. A person might as well expect a harvest where he has not sown, as to expect to be saved while living in indolence. The race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, yet “he shall become poor that dealeth with a slack hand.” [Proverbs 10:4.] Those who are diligent in business may not always be prospered; but drowsiness and idleness are sure to grieve the Spirit of God, and destroy true godliness. A stagnant pool becomes offensive; but a pure, flowing brook spreads health and gladness over the land.   

     Riches and idleness are thought by some to be blessings indeed; but those who are always busy, and who cheerfully go about their daily tasks, are the most happy, and enjoy the best health. The healthful weariness which results from well-regulated labor secures to them the benefits of refreshing sleep. The sentence that man must toil for his daily bread, and the promise of future happiness and glory, both came from the same throne, and both are blessings.  CTBH 96-97


  Body and mind need rest, that the mind may not become unbalanced and excited from being subjected to a constant strain. In our camp-meetings great pains is taken in Bible-readings and sermons to make important points of truth so clear that none need to be in ignorance. And good and regular sleep should be secured, that the mind may be clear, and in the best condition possible to weigh the arguments presented and to decide between truth and error.  RH, November 25, 1884


Sleep, Loss of, Results of.

--Cut down your work to that which you understand best. You have carried so many responsibilities that you are nearly bankrupt in mental and physical strength. Do not try to rush things as you have been doing. You cannot afford to sacrifice your needed rest and sleep in order to drive forward your work. You are wearing out altogether too fast. With overtaxed nerves, aching head, and sleepless nights, you have been losing ground physically, mentally and spiritually.   3MR 359


A cup of tea made from catnip herb will quiet the nerves. Hop tea will induce sleep. Hop poultices over the stomach will relieve pain. If the eyes are weak, if there is pain in the eyes, or inflammation, soft flannel clothes wet in hot water and salt, will bring relief quickly. When the head is congested, if the feet and limbs are put in a bath with a little mustard, relief will be obtained. There are many more simple remedies which will do much to restore healthful action to the body. All these simple preparations the Lord expects us to use for ourselves, but man's extremities are God's opportunities. If we neglect to do that which is within the reach of nearly every family, and ask the Lord to relieve pain, when we are too indolent to make use of these remedies within our power, it is simply presumption.  P C 28


Do not try to rush things as you have been doing. You can not afford to sacrifice your needed rest and sleep in order to drive forward your work. You are wearing out altogether too fast. With overtaxed nerves, aching head and sleepless nights, you have been losing ground physically, mentally, and spiritually.  SpM 218 

Education comprehends far more than many suppose. Mind and body must both receive attention; and unless our youth are versed in the science of how to care for the body as well as the mind, they will not be successful students. It is essential that students exercise their physical powers in such a way that their physical strength shall not be disproportionate to their mental development, and therefore a judicious system of physical culture should be combined with school discipline, that there may be a harmonious development of all the powers of mind and body. Nothing that pertains to physical perfection should be looked upon as of little importance. In eating, drinking, and dressing, the laws of health should be diligently followed, and in regulating the hours for sleep, there should be no haphazard work. No student should form the habit of sitting up late at night to burn the midnight oil, and then take the hours of day for sleep. If they have been accustomed to doing this at home, they should seek to correct their habits and go to rest at a seasonable hour, and rise in the morning refreshed for the day's duties. In our schools the lights should be extinguished at half past nine.    

     The student who desires to put the work of two terms into one, should not be permitted to have his own way in this matter. To undertake to do double work means with many, overtaxation of the mind, and a neglect of proper physical exercise. It is not reasonable to suppose that the mind can grasp and digest an oversupply of mental food, and it is as great a sin to overfeed the mind as it is to load the digestive organs, giving the stomach no periods of rest. The brain is the citadel of the whole man, and wrong habits of eating, dressing, or sleeping, affect the brain, and prevent the attaining of that which the student desires,--a good mental discipline. Any part of the body that is not treated with consideration will telegraph its injury to the brain. CE 124


It is a very bad habit to let the work drag and drive one. Drive the work, and then you will not become discouraged. It is a bad plan to give way to impulse. If you see a book you would like to read and sit down in the midst of your work and read during the precious hours of the day when there is work that needs to be done, then the work is neglected. Make it [a] habit not to sit up after nine o'clock. Every light should be extinguished. This turning night into day is a wretched, health-destroying habit, and this reading much by brain workers, up to the sleeping hours, is very injurious to health. It calls the blood to the brain and then there is restlessness and wakefulness, and the precious sleep that should rest the body does not come when desired. DG 177


Late "Snacks" a Pernicious Habit.

--Another pernicious habit is that of eating just before bedtime. The regular meals may have been taken; but because there is a sense of faintness, more food is taken. By indulgence this wrong practice becomes a habit and often so firmly fixed that it is thought impossible to sleep without food. As a result of eating late suppers, the digestive process is continued through the sleeping hours. But though the stomach works constantly, its work is not properly accomplished. The sleep is often disturbed with unpleasant dreams, and in the morning the person awakes unrefreshed and with little relish for breakfast. When we lie down to rest, the stomach should have its work all done, that it, as well as the other organs of the body, may enjoy rest. For persons of sedentary habits late suppers are particularly harmful. With them the disturbance created is often the beginning of disease that ends in death.  CG 389


Many indulge in the pernicious habit of eating just before retiring. They may have taken their regular meals, yet because they feel a sense of faintness, they think they must have a lunch. By indulging this wrong practice it becomes a habit, and they feel as though they could not sleep without food. In many cases this faintness comes because the digestive organs have been too severely taxed through the day in disposing of the great quantities of food forced upon them. These organs need a period of entire rest from labor, to recover their exhausted energies. A second meal should never be eaten until the stomach has had time to recover from the labor of digesting the preceding meal. When we lie down at night, the stomach should have its work all done, that it, as well as other portions of the body, may enjoy rest. But if more food is forced upon it, the digestive organs are put in motion again, to perform the same round of labor through the sleeping hours. The sleep of such is often disturbed with unpleasant dreams, and in the morning they awake unrefreshed. When this practice is followed, the digestive organs lose their natural vigor, and the person finds himself a miserable dyspeptic. And not only does the transgression of nature's laws affect the individual unfavorably, but others suffer more or less with him. Let any one take a course that irritates him in any way, and see how quickly he manifests impatience! He cannot, without special grace, speak or act calmly. He casts a shadow wherever he goes. How can any one say, then, “It is nobody's business what I eat or drink”?   

     It is possible to eat immoderately, even of wholesome food. It does not follow that because one has discarded the use of hurtful articles of diet, he can eat just as much as he pleases. Overeating, no matter what the quality of the food, clogs the living machine, and thus hinders it in its work.  CTBH 50-51


   There is nothing which more surely leads to evil than  to lift all burdens from children, leaving them to an idle, aimless life, to do nothing, or to occupy themselves as they please. The minds of children are active, and if not occupied with that which is good and useful, they will inevitably turn to what is bad. While it is right and necessary for them to have recreation, they should be taught to work, to have regular hours for physical labor, and also for reading and study. See that they have employment suited to their years, and are supplied with useful and interesting books. Satan improves the opportunity to educate idle minds. It is a sin to let children grow up in idleness. Let them exercise their limbs and muscles, even if it wearies them. If they are not overworked, how can weariness harm them more than it harms you? There is quite a difference between weariness and exhaustion. Children need more frequent change of employment and intervals of rest than grown persons do; but even when quite young, they may begin learning to work, and they will be happy in the thought that they are making themselves useful. Their sleep will be sweet after healthful labor, and they will be refreshed for the next day's work.  CTBH 134



I know from the testimonies given me from time to time for brain workers, that sleep is worth far more before than after midnight. Two hours' good sleep before twelve o'clock is worth more than four hours after twelve o'clock. . . .   7MR 224