I don’t know about you, but over the past year or so, my sleeping patterns have been a little off.
Sometimes, it’s due to pain that wakes me and makes it hard to get comfortable. But before I became ill, I had many nights of unexplained wakefulness. The world was changing, on edge, hanging by a thread of hope and there was much to think about and pray for.
Because I’ve had continuing sleep challenges, a couple things I read recently in Hosting the Presence by Bill Johnson really stood out to me. He wrote about how he turns his heart to God before he goes to bed and waits until God’s peace rests on him so he can sleep well. If he wakes in the night, he once again turns his heart toward God to receive peace.
I pray when I go to bed. I often pray if I wake up in the night, but this concept of resting with the peace of God on us seems pretty cool to me. Not only that, but he also wrote that when we give God our night, it begins our day. If you think about it, the A.M. hours are the start to the new day, even if most of us are sleeping during them. But what if we start our next day by giving God our night before we go to bed and if we awaken in those wee hours?
When peace is given, it must be received in order to be of benefit.”Bill Johnson Hosting the Presence
Peace is one of the characteristics of the Holy Spirit. But so often we struggle to have peace, to figure out how to get peace, or make peace happen. We can’t conjure up peace. God gladly gives us peace. Jesus said “My peace I give you.” (John 14:27)
But if we aren’t positioning ourselves to receive it, will it benefit us?
Giving him the night is a way of preparing ourselves to receive his peace both while we sleep and for the next day.
That’s some good news.
And not only can we experience God’s peace when we turn our hearts towards him and rest in his presence, but we also cause problems for the enemy who is trying to steal, kill, and destroy us. When he sends trouble our way, we are safe in the presence and peace of God. We threaten the enemy’s attempt to toss us around when we are in peace.
Abiding in peace makes us a threat to any storm.”Bill Johnson Hosting the Presence
So, tonight, when I go to bed, I’m going to turn my heart toward God and rest in his presence until I feel his peace come over me. When I wake up in the night, I’ll do the same thing again.
I’m looking forward to starting the day tomorrow, and continuing the week in the presence of God with the Holy Spirit’s peace surrounding me.
I pray you will rest there too. The peace that God gives me, I release to you. Goodnight.