Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him. Psalm 37:7 NKJV
A good night’s rest is vital for good health, but what if it won’t come?
For sixteen years, I’ve had an erratic sleep pattern. Though I’ve never had a sleep study performed, I attribute it to age and a spastic mind. Lying awake for an hour before going back to sleep is normal. And of course, when I wake up, I must make a trip to the bathroom.
When the alarm sounds, I normally feel as if I haven’t been to bed. Some days, I supplement my restless night with a short lunchtime nap. I suppose the doctor would prescribe medication to help me sleep, but I hesitate to add another medicine to my ever-growing list. I long for the days when I slept an entire night and for the energy I had when I awoke.
Thankfully, there’s an alternate rest that has nothing to do with closing my eyes or entering into a different state of mind. The psalmist classifies it as resting in the Lord and couples it with waiting patiently on Him. This type of rest I can master.
I often associate resting and waiting with inactivity. I rest in my recliner; I wait in the doctor’s waiting room. But I’m normally not inactive while doing either. I read a book, watch television, or look at my iPhone. Resting in the Lord is similar. I rest by not being anxious. I believe He is in control, has a plan for my life, and is actively working to accomplish that plan. My part is to keep doing the last thing He told me until I receive further instructions.
David, the psalmist, was familiar with this type of resting and waiting. God had sent the prophet Samuel to anoint him as the next king of Israel, but it was a number of years before he actually assumed the throne. In the meantime, he kept doing what he had been doing: minding the sheep.
Resting in the Lord and waiting patiently on Him also means realizing God’s timetable is often different than mine. What seems like an eternity to me may only be seconds in God’s mind. His timing involves my readiness, and sometimes it takes long periods of time for me to prepare for what He has in store.
Let God teach you how to enjoy the best rest—whether you sleep well at night or not.
Tweetable: Are you getting enough rest?
Prayer: Father, teach us to rest in You as we wait patiently for You to accomplish Your best in our lives.