Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "The Day Thou Gavest Lord Is Ended"1 (Lyrics)
It was one of the worst nights of sleeplessness that I'd ever endured. As part of his high school graduation gift, I had made plans for an overnight road trip, camping with my grandson. The drive in his beloved vintage Volkswagen camper van was wonderful, and we saw sights in Oregon, USA, that we had never seen before. After a long day of driving, we found a quiet forestry campsite for the night and settled in for a much-needed rest. Ryan, in his top bunk, slept soundly; but me, in the lower level — not so much.
My platform bed was totally suitable, and a second night after my aching bones had adjusted to the change would likely have been fine. As it was, my pillow was too flat, and I was not used to my borrowed, hot, confining mummy sleeping bag. All night long, I tossed and turned to all four cardinal points of the compass, rotating from head to foot, and side to side. Peering at my watch at one point, I was distressed to find that it was only 4:00 a.m. Three more hours to go!
I have been in other situations when it seemed as though morning would never come. A whining mosquito circling my head all night has seemed almost unendurable, and nights of illness can seem to be endless. A crying baby disturbs anyone's rest. Sometimes, my mind is going a million miles an hour and won't turn off as I mentally work through plans for an upcoming event or contemplate a major decision. Others have experienced night terrors far worse than mine. There are true dangers in the night that make daybreak most welcome. Things are often not as ominous or frightening in the light of day.
In times of restless sleeplessness, I often reflect on Psalm 4:8 – "When I lie down, I go to sleep in peace; you alone, O Lord, keep me perfectly safe." (GNT). What a comfort and blessing it is to know that God is my sentry through the night. He is watching over me through those dark, lonely hours, holding me close. Another promise to cling to is "he gives sleep to his beloved." (Psalm 127:2b NRSV)
Point to ponder: In our times of restless sleeplessness, what do we do? Where do we turn? To the medicine cabinet for a sleeping pill? How much better it is to place our trust in Him to bear our burdens and give us peace and rest.
Prayer: Dear Father, thank You that You lovingly guard and keep us every hour of every day. In times of restless sleeplessness, may we turn our cares and burdens over to You and trust You to keep us safe through the night. Amen.