I recently spotted a newspaper article under the banner heading, ‘The secret of a good night’s sleep has finally been found by scientists.’ I was intrigued to know what scientists had discovered and read the article with great interest. I anticipated that it would give dietary recommendations to improve sleeping patterns, activities to avoid doing before bedtime and advice as to how to mentally turn off from all the day’s activities.
The conclusion the scientists reached, however, was that the secret of a good night’s sleep is having something worth getting out of bed for the next day. Based on a study of 832 people, the US scientists found that having a purpose in life results in fewer night time disturbances and improved sleep quality.
In Psalm 4 we read that King David discovered the secret of a good’s night sleep nearly 3,000 years ago. In verse 8 he writes ‘In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.’ There were good reasons why King David might not be able to sleep well. His life was often in great danger. Initially from Saul and later from his own son Absalom and the warring nations surrounding Israel. David knew, however, that God answers prayer and could give him relief in his distress (Psalm 4:4). David had discovered that when he put his trust in the Lord – when he knew he was in the centre of God’s will – peaceful sleep came easily.
I believe that is true also for us. The latest study from the scientists simply confirm what God’s word says to us. When we put our trust in Jesus, when we realise that God has a plan and purpose for our life, we have a reason for getting out of bed and can sleep peacefully and soundly in anticipation of what God has in store for us tomorrow. Paul writing to the Philippians puts it this way, ‘The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 4:5-7).
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that Your word says that in peace I can lie down and sleep. Help me Lord to cast all my anxieties upon you. Help me to know Your plans and purposes for my life. Thank You that I can know and live in Your peace which passes all understanding. Amen.
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