WHAT KEEPS YOU UP AT NIGHT?

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WHAT KEEPS YOU UP AT NIGHT?

“At midnight I will rise to give thanks to You,
Because of Your righteous judgments.” Psalm 119:62

Many things keep us up at night. Our jobs, our family, our teenage son who is still out painting the town red with his antics at 3 in the morning. Worry is common, worry is familiar, and worry keeps us up at night, robbing us of the rest which Jesus came to bring us.

But if we look at the Psalms, there is another reason why we might lose sleep at night. And that happens when we are filled with an overwhelming sense of our Father’s love for us. Because we have seen His righteous judgments in our lives, because we have seen His protection and tasted His provision, we are in awe of just how unworthy we are and how loving He is. And that joy will keep us up at night, cause us to get up at midnight to thank Him. Or does it?

“The cords of the wicked have bound me,
But I have not forgotten Your law.” Psalm 119:61

Now, this we are familiar with. The words and deeds of wicked people ensnare us. They try to make us trip up because of rage and perhaps even righteous anger. We see injustice and it offends us. We are victims of slander and unjust treatment and we are angered, pulling at the reins of reason, looking for a good excuse to let loose our vengeance. And for some of us, we get so upset that we get our Father to act on our behalf. After all, He did say,

“Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God:” Deuteronomy 28:1-2

“For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me,” Exodus 20:5

So because “The Lord knows those who are His” 2 Timothy 2:19

We have every right to call on Him to protect us from the wicked people around us.

But what happens after we have been delivered? Does the memory of our deliverance keep us up at night the way the problem did? If it doesn’t, and we know it never does, what does it say about what matters more to us? If the problem was big, if the problem mattered greatly, shouldn’t the deliverance be of equal, if not more, significance?

Isn’t it strange that our Father’s deliverance gets forgotten so quickly? Look at the times Israel complained against our Father while they were wandering around in the desert. Weren’t they the very ones who experienced, first-hand, His provision and protection?

And what about us? When was the last time you were so filled with joy at our Father’s deliverance that you felt the need to get up in the middle of the night to thank Him? Oh that’s right, nothing that significant ever happened in your life, right?

Beloved, I don’t need to quote scripture to tell you how important it is that we constantly fill our minds with the memories of just how faithful our Father has been in our lives. Our histories prove that the moment we forget, the moment the knowledge of our Father’s love leaves our consciousness, thoughts of abandonment start to creep in together with worry, because,

“sin crouches at your door; its desire is for you,” Genesis 4:7 [AMP]

The worry and feelings of God not caring are always around, just waiting for you to let it slip from your mind just how much our Father loves you.

Instead, take a lesson from the Psalmist.

“You are my portion, O Lord;
I have said that I would keep Your words.” Psalm 119:57

God is our portion only when we remember just how much He has given us. And once we realize just how much He has blessed us with, we will certainly keep His words.

“I entreated Your favor with my whole heart;
Be merciful to me according to Your word.” Psalm 119:58

We will only think to entreat our Father’s favor if we know that He is for us. And once we remember just how merciful He has been to us, when we remember all the blessings He has given us, even though we really did not deserve them; we will certainly continue to entreat His favor according to His word.

“I thought about my ways,
And turned my feet to Your testimonies.
I made haste, and did not delay
To keep Your commandments.” Psalm 119:59-60

We will only think to turn our feet to His ways and His testimonies if we remember how we have been delivered. Else, we will rely on our own smarts and our own strength to see the problem through. And once we remember each and every time we have been delivered, we will certainly make haste to keep His commandments the next time troubles come.

But what are His words that we should keep? What are His commandments?

He said it in many ways and at many times. But to me, none more succinctly put than this.

“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:31-33

Jesus came to give us rest. He came to remind us that we are loved and well cared for. He came to remind us to

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” Matthew 7:7-11

“Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” Mark 11:24

He came to remind us that the only reason we have for losing sleep at night is the joy that fills our heart each and every time we remember just how loved, protected and cared for we are.

So if you are losing sleep over anything else, if worry is keeping you up at night, spend some time taking stock of all that our Father has done for you; and even if that doesn’t make you get up in the middle of the night, it will make you realize that there is nothing you need to worry about because He has got it all under control.

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