In peace I will both lie down and sleep. For you alone O Lord make me dwell in safety.
I read this the other morning as I was doing my daily morning ritual.
Reading the Bible every morning is a habit I started about six or seven years ago maybe longer. I’m not exactly sure when I made it part of my daily ritual but I know it was before I made the decision to leave behind the stress and frustration of my management position.
I was looking for contentment in my life, serenity to take the place of the chaos and pressure I was experiencing every day on my job. The chaos and pressure always made its way into my mornings, evenings, weekends, holidays and vacations.
I was not able to lie down and sleep in peace.
I was looking to figure out how I could once again sleep at night and then wake up and greet the day with a positive outlook.
So I started reading my Bible again. I would read it cover to cover over the course of each year, just a few pages each day.
I’m not going to say that I read this chapter and verse or that chapter and verse and suddenly had all my answers. It was a tool that gave me knowledge, insight and helped guide me to the decisions that I have made.
So now that I generally sleep through the night, other than getting up to use the bathroom one or two times, I look at this verse from Psalms and realize my peaceful sleep is a gift from God. You especially realize this when you haven’t had any peaceful sleep for fifteen years.
“In peace I will lie down and sleep.”
I think of how as a child I had almost nothing but peaceful sleep. I think about how a child will fight that inevitable time when peaceful sleep wins and takes over your body. I think about how a child wants to stay awake to not miss anything that could happen, even if nothing is happening they want to keep playing.
Then forty years later all you really want to do is close your eyes and forget about all the frustration and anxiety of the day. Maybe you’ll even have a real nice dream.
But the worries of your family, your job, your mortgage, etc. just keep your mind going as you lie there in bed. Finally out of sheer exhaustion you nod off, for just a few hours.
Then there is a bump in the night or your body says wake up and go to the bathroom. You are awake again. The worry and the anxiety start up again and sleep is pushed aside.
After tossing and turning you say to yourself I might as well get up and go into the office and take care of some of this stuff because I’m not getting back to sleep.
I finally said enough of this.
Now I look upon my sleep as a gift from God.
“In peace I will both lie down and sleep. For you alone O Lord make me dwell in safety.”
That verse did not stay with me when I was starting my 8:00 AM office job at 6:00 AM. I was so wrapped up in what I was doing I couldn’t realize that was all I was looking for, to lie down and sleep in peace.
But reading my Bible helped guide me to what I need to do.
So when I read it this time I saw the power in that verse.
It was always there I was just too tired to see it.
© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.