I stared into the shadows of my darkened bedroom. After being sound asleep, I was suddenly wide awake. Every problem, concern, and worry flooded my mind.
Oh no Lord! What am I going to do about ………
This happens to me from time to time. I fall asleep completely fine, and then I am awakened with the reality of overwhelming problems, and things I need to take care of. My mind will go into high gear doing something that is very dangerous, thinking. Overthinking.
This used to keep me up for hours as I tossed and turned, just thinking and thinking. Not anymore. It took some discipline, and the grace and mercy of God, to not let the middle of the night overthinking stop me. The reality that God is watching over me helped set me free of my night time anxiety.
God is in the watches of the night.
The Roman military divided the night into four watches. A soldier had one of those night watches lasting three hours. The soldiers were keeping watch for the enemy to prevent a surprise attack. They were ready to defend any invaders and alert of potential trouble.
God has all four watches of the night. All night. Every night. He is working and watching over us. When we wake up in the middle of the night, and the fear wants to take over, He is there. God is aware of potential trouble and knows about every surprise attack. It’s no surprise to Him.
God does not clock out when we go to sleep. He’s not on our human schedule. God is always at work. God works at night while you are sleeping, or tossing and turning. It doesn’t matter if you are awake or not. Our problems do not prohibit God. He is limitless.
I lay down and slept; I awoke, for the LORD sustains me. Psalm 3:5
The LORD will guard your going out and your coming in From this time forth and forever. Psalm 121:8
The eyes of the LORD are in every place, Watching the evil and the good. Proverbs 15:3
When you lie down, you will not be afraid; When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Proverbs 3:24
To stop my night time anxiety I do two simple things.
The first thing I do is listen to the Holy Spirit. He is always speaking, we just need to listen. He reminds me of the truth and will put scriptures in my head. Here’s one that came to mind the other night as I was overthinking.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7, NIV
I just say that verse in my head until I fall back asleep. It’s the truth. We are not to worry and be anxious. Yes, we will all suffer from normal human anxieties and worries, but we do not have to stay stuck there. Even if I can only say the first part of the verse, that’s what I do. It really helps and has been my most powerful weapon in fighting my own thoughts.
Prayer is powerful too. When you are up in the middle of the night with an overactive mind like I’ve got, pray. Honest prayers are the best. Ask for help. God is always willing and able to help us. He is faithful to hear and answer our prayers.
If fear wakes you up in the dead of night, be encouraged today. Do not let those fears and negative thoughts stop you. The Lord will help you overcome. God is always working and He takes the night shift. God loves you so much! Trust Him to care for you even while you sleep. Amen.
Love you all,
Thank you for your unending love. You are awesome, holy God. I lift up all who are struggling with night time anxiety. May your peace flood their hearts and minds. Give each person restful sleep. When they wake up in moments of fear, comfort them and speak to their hearts and minds the truth that you are with them. We praise you and thank you!
In Jesus name,
All scripture quoted is from NASB.
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