Psalms in Rhyming Meter
Do you have trouble sleeping at night? Occasionally we all do. Mental to-do lists run through our mind. We debate pros and cons of decisions to be made. We rehearse highlights of the last 24 hours.
But when a lack of peace is the culprit keeping me from relaxing and falling asleep, I remind myself that Someone is watching over me all night. Just knowing God is there releases stress and enables my body to rest.
I lay me down in perfect peace and slept,
And rested till Jehovah spoke to wake me;
He watched unceasing over me, and kept
My life secure; nor hate nor hurt could take me!
Psalm 3:5 from Psalm Poems by Thomas M. Seller.
Used by permission.
Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
This childhood prayer contains more practical theology than we might expect. Like a baby who doesn’t know how to worry, we can relieve ourselves of issues by turning them over to God. In her book Be Somebody, Mary Crowley quipped, “Every evening I turn my worries over to God. He’s going to be up all night anyway!”
The second line of the psalm-poem has changed the way I look at waking up in the middle of the night. I used to get frustrated that my sleep was interrupted. I would lie awake trying to remember the clever thoughts that came to mind. Eventually I kept paper and pencil on the night stand to jot down notes (once I used a pen and in the morning discovered there was nothing on the paper! A pencil works better.)
The idea of God speaking to wake me up at 2 AM is a precious thought. Gone is the frustration. I interpret the jolt awake as God saying, “I want to talk to you so much that I can’t wait ‘til 7:00.” Imagine that. With millions of people already awake, God’s desire is to talk to me at that moment. I’m going to pay attention to what He says.
Father-God, grant me a childlike confidence that You are in control and assurance that my worry doesn’t add any help to the situation.
What about you? Do you awaken in the middle of the night? What do you do? Read? Blog? Pray? Meditate? Listen for God’s voice?
Wow…what a wonderful way to meditate on God even in the night. I’m going to add paper and pencil to my bedside table. LOVE these Psalm Poems (my book is on my bedside table too . . . right along with my Bible) . . . and your observations about them.
I try to evaluate what I write the next day because sometimes middle of the night thoughts are due more to late night pepperoni pizza than the Lord’s inspiration. But if ideas agree with scripture, are confirmed by standard “will of the Lord tests,” and over the next few days I continue to return to those thoughts with additional detail, I value them as God’s communication.