I don’t always sleep well at night. Some nights it takes me forever to go to sleep. Some nights I fall asleep quickly enough, but my sleep is restless…waking up multiple times during the night. Sometimes going to sleep is not the problem, but I awake really early and can’t go back to sleep.
The other morning I woke up around 4:30 and could not go back to sleep. I tried and tried to fall back asleep, but I just couldn’t quiet my mind enough. I just kept thinking about the fact that everywhere I go, Greg’s not there. When I climb into bed at night, he’s not there. When I get up in the morning, he’s not there. When I sit down to eat a meal, he’s not there. When I do laundry, there are none of his clothes because he’s not there. When I go to church, he’s not there. When I go to family gatherings, he’s not there. When I sit on the couch to watch tv, he’s not there. When I go to a restaurant, he’s not there. When I have parenting issues, he’s not there. When I am sick, he’s not there. When I have to make big decisions, he’s not there. When I’m afraid, he’s not there. When I don’t know how to do something, he’s not there. When I have a birthday, he’s not there. When I’m sitting on the beach, he’s not there. When it’s time for him to be coming home from work, he’s not there. When I expect to hear him singing in the bathroom as he’s getting ready for work in the morning, he’s not there. When we go on a family vacation, he’s not there. When his birthday or our anniversary rolls around, he’s not there. When I need advice or wisdom, he’s not there. When there’s a holiday to celebrate, he’s not there. When I receive mail or phone calls for him, it’s a cruel reminder that he’s not there. When I’m frustrated, or happy, or lonely, or anxious, or excited, or overwhelmed, or sad…..he’s not there.
I finally just got up and started my day….albeit a bit early for me. :) I made my coffee and sat down to spend some time with the Lord. I was still feeling awfully sad, when He gently reminded me of Psalm 139. This is one of my favorite chapters in the Bible. As I reflected on this chapter, I could visualize and still hear my sweet little girls when they were about 5 and 7 reciting it…..all 24 verses! We worked on memorizing it in our homeschool; adding one or two verses each week, until they knew it all. I had no idea then, that the Lord would use that sweet memory and those sweet words to encourage me all these years later!
That morning the Lord reminded me that everywhere I go, HE is there. He reminded me that He knows when I sit down and when I rise up; He discerns my thoughts from afar. He knows when I go out and when I lie down. Even before a word is on my tongue, He already knows it. He hems me in, behind and before, and He lays His hand upon me. He tells me that there is no place that I can go and be away from Him; I cannot flee from His Presence. Everywhere I go, He is there!
What a kind God to encourage me in this way! He really is faithful and He really is good!
You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.
Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.
If only you, God, would slay the wicked!
Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!
They speak of you with evil intent;
your adversaries misuse your name.
Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord,
and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
I have nothing but hatred for them;
I count them my enemies.
Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.
Trusting His Plan,