Hot Coals and Angry Lions


As my sleepy head breaks through unconsciousness, I lie here in bed not wanting to see what time it is. I hope it’s at least 5 a.m.  Finally giving in, I peek my head up to see the blurry digital clock. It’s only 1 a.m, not a surprise. Every morning it’s the same dance routine with a performance starting around the same time. Starring in the performance is me…and my bed.

1:00 a.m.

When I went to sleep, my bed wrapped me in its warm covers as I shivered under the coolness of the ceiling fan.  Three hours later, I awake lying on a bed of coals. Heat is trapped under me like an angry lion that’s roaring to get out. My cool frigid bed has morphed into an oven. Now the dance routine begins.

ACT 1 “My Turn”

I’m too tired to do this dance, but the bed of coals insists with its unbearable heat. So I begin the dance by turning over onto my other side, hoping to give the hot, angry lion just enough room to escape.  That move lasted all of about 15 seconds. The coals are burning hot as ever. That one simple turn wasn’t enough to let the heat of the angry lion out.

ACT 2 “The Rotisserie Rumba”

One turn didn’t help, so I turn back over, and over, and over again like a chicken on a rotisserie. I’m equally cooked on all sides and the hot coals are still burning. The roaring lion is angry and SO AM I! Can’t I just have ONE break from this 1 a.m. nightly dance routine?

ACT 3 “Exposure”

I hate to make this move, but I have to. I pull back the sheet to expose just one naked leg to the raw elements that lurk outside my soft, protective sheets. The cool breeze feels so nice on my hot leg (this is the ONLY time I have hot legs)…but I feel so exposed! As I lie there feeling some relief from the burning coals, I worry about the lion I’ve just released. Is he dancing in the shadows over there by the door, just waiting to pounce on my exposed leg? I pull the protective sheets over my leg and turn my back in defeat of the roaring lion lurking by the door.

ACT 4 “Victory”

The coals are at their maximum heat again and the lion has snuck back into my bed. My bladder is screaming to be emptied. I’m screaming that it’ll just have to wait until a more respectable hour to be emptied. But no, it can’t wait. It’s gotta be emptied NOW.  I get up out of bed in an angry fit and stumble into the bathroom, giving victory to the coals, the lion AND my bladder.

ACT 5 “Re-morph”

It doesn’t take long for the bed of coals to cool and morph back into a bed of slumber. The heat of the roaring angry lion has vanished.  I feel a sense of comfort as I arrange myself into the perfect sleeping position. I should have bowed out of the dance long ago and not given into my bed’s request to do the hot coals dance. If I had gotten out of bed sooner and allowed it to cool itself down a bit, then I would’ve been resting the past 25 minutes and not dancing!

1:27 a.m.  Ah…sleep is on its way!

Not so quick! There’s very important business that I must take care of in my head. Did I remember to lock the doggie door? If not, there might be a rat rummaging through the kitchen right now! I don’t even know how to set a rat trap to catch it. How would I dispose of a dead rat?  Did I set the trash out by the curb for tomorrow morning’s trash pickup?

1:35 a.m.  I’ve reassured myself that I remembered to lock the doggie door and there isn’t a rat devouring the Oreos in the pantry. NOW I can go to sleep…as soon as I write about this dance I’ve had with my bed.



What are you lying on that is hot and uncomfortable? Why do you continue to subject yourself to the hot coals of an unsatisfying job, a relationship that’s gone sour or self-pity over circumstances?

Readjust; expose yourself to a little danger and GET UP and MOVE! As long as you lay on those hot coals they are just going to get hotter. Get up and find a new cool spot to be in!


Ecclesiastes 3:1 “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens”

The next seven verses of this chapter give 14 examples of what there are beginning and ending times for. Here are a few that I need to be more mindful of:

There’s a  time to search and a time to give up; a time to keep and a time to throw away; a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to be silent and a time to speak.

If you’re uncomfortable in a certain area of your life, God may be trying to get your attention and urging you to move. The time for those things have ended.

 With all things that end, there is also a new beginning.

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