"Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation."
The first chapters of the Book of Leviticus teach us about the importance of offerings as means of approaching God. In the forty-third chapter of Isaiah, God complains that Israel has become weary of Him; that His people give their attention to idols of metal, stone and wood, and that when it come times to serve Him, they are not available. They are like a spouse who has become bored in their relationship with their lover.
The Sages of Israel put it this way:
A man stands engaged in his business transactions all day long without growing weary, but when it is time to pray to Me, then he is too weary.
A man stands engaged in his business transactions all day long without getting weary, but if his friend says to him, “come and pray”, he replies that he is not able to do so.
A man will sit all day long without getting tired, but as soon as he gets up to say prayers he feels tired.
A man will sit all day long without growing drowsy, but as soon as he sits down to study he feels drowsy. (Lamentations Rabbah chapt 10; Ester Rabbah 4:8).
I am a married man of thirty two years. My wife and I have raised 6 children. One thing we have learned is that it takes work to keep a marriage relationship alive and interesting. One of the best marriage advice I ever received is, “Your wife loves God, so become the man God wants you to become and your wife will fall in love with you; she will fall in love with the Spirit of God within you”. I think it works both ways. A man who loves God will also fall in love with the Spirit of God in his wife.
In the case of Israel and God, I think that God does not fail to keep things exciting for us. The problem was that Israel got its eyes off Adonai and distracted by the false glitter of idols.
Today idolatry is not such a problem, but distraction is. If we feel that God is not enough, maybe we do not invest ourselves enough in the elements of our relationship with Him. Our eyes are somewhere else, on the world, instead of focused on the things He has for us.
May we learn to return to Him; to say with the psalmist, light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death (Psalms 13:3); My eyes are ever toward the LORD, for he will pluck my feet out of the net (Psalms_25:15).