Sleep. Safe, peaceful, nutritious. Restoration, healing of body and mind.
Insomnia. Troubled mind, troubled body, burning eyes and longing for peace, for comfort, for rest.
The psalmist certainly knew what it was like to have trouble sleeping. His words hit the mark because we all know how it feels.
I’m tired of my sighing. Every night I let my bed float… my eye is wasted with grief. Psalm 6:7-8 During the night my hand was stretched out without wearying; My soul refused to be comforted…You kept my eyelids open…Ps 77:2;4
Insomnia damages both our bodies and minds, causes problems from diabetes to heart disease, leads to accidents and poor work performance, and makes us snappy, irritable, and moody.
We all desire restful sleep, a healthy body and joyful energy. The question for many is: HOW? Most of us suffer from insomnia on occasion, but for many, sleep deprivation has become a painful way of life.
I’m sure you’ve read the tips: exercise more, drink less alcohol, use white noise, take a hot bath, sleep in a cool room, drink warm milk (OK, I know this really helps, but I’d rather stay high!)
All of these things are certainly true. And if you haven’t already, why not?
You won’t sleep well if you don’t exercise regularly – you can count on that. Alcohol makes you drowsy, but it also disrupts your sleep structure, causing you to wake up between bouts of shallow, poor sleep. Warm baths, the hum of a fan in a cool, dark room…all good ideas, essential for a good night’s sleep.
But what if you’ve done all of this and you’re still having trouble sleeping?
David knew what brought him sound sleep, and he spends much of his time in joy and happiness. What is different for David when he sleeps?
You have put joy in my heart… in peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety. Psalm 5:7-8 I lay down and slept; I woke up, for the Lord sustains me. I will not be afraid of tens of thousands of people who have opposed me. Psa 4:5-6
Sleep comes when we know we are safe and secure. And that assurance comes with trust in the Lord. With the assurance that you will be held securely in His hands.
You will worry – and while it’s true that most of the things you worry about will never happen, know that some will! Your worries grow out of real worries and reflect the love you have for others, the hopes you have for the future. Perhaps you are struggling with heartbreak and loss and with very real problems to face in the morning.
But your worry won’t help, no matter how real the worry is. And in your heart you know that… and so the fears and worries start all over again.
Sometimes it really seems like tens of thousands have turned against us! You want to hand over your fears and worries, your “head chatter” to Him, but how? How can you have the peace and restful sleep that comes when you trust in Him and know that you will be kept safe no matter what?
Meditate in your heart on your bed and be still. Psalm 4:4 I will remember my song at night; I will meditate with my heart…Ps 77:6
In meditation, God speaks to our hearts, minds and bodies. He gives us peace at the deepest level… and we can relax and sleep in the security of his peace. In meditation He fills our hearts with the warmth of His love. It washes our body with soothing biochemical cascades, giving us everything we need to sleep deeply and richly.
And the more we meditate, the better we sleep!
So when you fight at night, remember David’s words and let God’s peaceful gift of meditation fill your soul with comfort and your body with calm.
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