Wednesday, February 4, 2009


As I lay in bed not sleeping, it occurred to me that I should make good use of the time.

This was self induced insomnia. I made too much coffee after supper last night. I ground too much while being absent minded. Then, when there was coffee left over, I didn't want to waste it. So I drank an extra two or three mugs.

I didn't think it would still be affecting me at bedtime, but it sure was. I was wide awake. And I knew it was the coffee. And I knew it would wear off eventually. And it did - sometime after 11:30 PM.

I knew I wasn't going to get any sympathy from Lola. She would just point out (correctly) that I was a dope for doing that to myself. (It is good to have a spouse who holds you accountable and keeps you grounded in reality.) I worried that my restlessness would disturb her sleep, so I tried to keep my breathing even and minimize my tossing and turning.

I thought about getting up - but figured that eventually I would get sleepy if I could just stay in bed. So - what can you do to make your hours of sleeplessness worthwhile without getting out of bed?

Here's what I did:
  • Prayed for people who are having special needs right now.
  • Prayed for the church and our work to glorify God.
  • Worked on my Sunday morning sermon... and came up with important changes.
  • Thought about the many ways God has blessed me - with health, with family, with ministry.
  • Did math about how many hours of sleep I would get from each half hour to my 5:00 AM alarm.
  • Made mental lists of things I need to do.

At eleven I listened attentively as the mantle clock struck the hour. I was still fully awake. I wasn't the least bit drowsy yet. At eleven thirty-two (it's an antique) I heard the mantle clock half hour chime... and that is pretty much all I remember until my alarm.

Praise God! Awake or asleep, we are in His hands. He is always caring for us.
(Psalms 121:2-4) My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth.
3 He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber.
4 Behold, He who keeps Israel Shall neither slumber nor sleep.
(Psalms 139:1-3) O LORD, You have searched me and known me.
2 You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off.
3 You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways.
(Psalms 63:6) When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches.
(Psalms 4:8) I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.

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