Psalm 4:8 “I will both lay me down in peace and sleep; for Thou Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.”
Sleep is one of the essential needs of a human being. Yet, one of the common complaints amongst today’s population is insomnia or difficulty falling and/or staying asleep. Medications are prescribed on a daily basis and much money are spent to combat this ailment; yet, without full relief.
Psalm 4:8 is speaking of not just sleep, but a peaceful sleep, due to his trust in the Lord to maintain him safely. Peaceful sleep requires transferring all our issues to God and realizing that by giving them up to God, we free our minds to sleep. Almost everyone can relate to disturbed or troubled sleep due to our minds being on overdrive with worry for tomorrow or anxiety over tackling a problem.
In the 1st century, the church went through extreme persecutions. King Herod beheaded James, the disciple of Jesus, and when he saw the killing pleased the Jews, he caught peter for the purpose of executing him as well. Meanwhile, Peter was kept in the prison under high security. Acts 12: 6 speaks of the night before his supposed public execution. We would expect to see an anxious, sleep deprived Peter. Instead, “….the same night, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains…” Logically, one would wonder how it’s anatomically possible to sleep while in chains or how it’s humanly possible to sleep when you know the king has ordered your death for the morning. Peter can sleep because he has been a first-hand witness to the divine and omnipotent Jesus. Therefore, he is confident that Jesus can deliver him at the 11th hour. He gave up his problems to Jesus and slept peacefully in a cold prison floor, chained between enemies.
Jesus showed us that it’s possible to sleep through a storm. Jesus and His disciples were sailing in a ship, when a “great tempest” hit the waters and the waves were covering the ship. “But He (Jesus), was asleep.” Matt. 8: 24. The disciples woke Jesus up to save them and Jesus said to them “Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?” Matt. 8: 26. Jesus slept peacefully because He was not fearful. The nature obeys Him. No power of storm or darkness can overpower Him. Thus, He can sleep peacefully amidst chaos. When we give our fears to Jesus, and have faith in the One that can calm our winds and our waves, we will have our peaceful sleep.
Trouble sleeping? Give up your burden to Jesus; even if you are facing a trial the next day; even when your ship is tossed around by waves; even when your verdict is written against you by physicians and the public. He can deliver you at the last hour, as peter was broken out of prison. He can calm the tempest with one word.
For His glory,