Skip to main content

Sleepless Nights

Have you ever had one of those 'sleepless nights' where you just toss and turn, taking short cat naps here and there, but not really getting a great deep sleep that lasts for hours? This happens to me maybe way more than I should admit! I usually get off to sleep well, but then awaken in a few hours, only to find that my mind starts working on something I was musing over, looking for a solution to earlier in the day. In those wee hours of the night, I often come to some pretty great conclusions, finding solutions that had evaded me earlier, and creating things in my mind that I could fashion in my workshop. Why is it that nighttime brings that solution or creative surge? I think it might just be our being environment being quiet enough to listen - both the one we live in and the one that lives in us!

I praise the Lord because he advises me.
 Even at night, I feel his leading. I keep the Lord before me always. Because he is close by my side, I will not be hurt. So I rejoice and am glad. Even my body has hope, because you will not leave me in the grave. You will not let your holy one rot. You will teach me how to live a holy life. Being with you will fill me with joy; at your right hand I will find pleasure forever. (Psalm 16:7-11)

God isn't ever far from us, but in the stillness of night there comes a little extra 'attentiveness' we find actually helping us to become more 'honed' and 'focused' in listening and learning. God is always there to lead us, but we aren't always attentive to being led! Some of us need quiet moments in order to help us realize his leading is there - we just haven't been listening too well! Now, lest you think there is something magical in the wee hours of the night, there isn't really anything special about those hours when we should be asleep. It is just that if God hasn't been able to get through our 'muddled thoughts' and 'frantic activities' of the day, he will use the quiet moments of the night to help us find the answers we are searching for so desperately.

God's work in us is to teach us how to live holy lives. All that means is that he will help us make the right choices that lead to the right actions that produce the right results. Now, that should come as good news to some of us who have been looking at making 'choices', no matter what they are. If you are trying to choose which car to buy, or what company to use for a particular repair, or even where to find the best deals on your plants for your garden, God is there to help you choose. Question for you - do you 'always' go to God with your choices? If you answer honestly, your answer will probably be like mine - "nope". There are some choices God expects us to make 'automatically' - like choosing to always do what is right. The choice to do right or wrong is there - but there is really only one 'right choice'.

When we need his direction, it is there, but we aren't always 'there' to receive it. Some of us get easily distracted and find the 'direction' we so desperately need gets drowned out by the 'noise' of the distractions. When this happens, we may find God uses those 'quiet hours' of the night to help us to hear what he has been saying. It isn't that he doesn't want us to sleep - he wants us to have clarity and peace so that our 'rest' will be deep and perfect in every way. Rather than complain about that sleepless night, maybe what we should do is turn over, lay there for a moment and just breathe in his presence. There in his presence we might utter the words, "I am listening, Lord" and mean it. In that moment of recognizing he may have something to show us in that quiet space, he may just speak into our lives the clarity we are seeking! Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

Do me a favor

If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care—then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Philippians 2:1-4) Has God's love made ANY difference in your life? What is that difference? Most of us will likely say that our lives were changed for the good, while others will say there was a dramatic change. Some left behind lifestyles marked by all manner of outward sin - like drug addiction, alcoholism, prostitution, or even thievery. There are many that will admit the things they left behind were just a bit subtler - what we can call inward sin - things like jealousy,