Monday, May 4, 2020

Overcoming Insomnia and Anxiety with Psalms 3 and 4

 -  Challenge  Day  Three  .  Getting  to   Sleep  Before  Midnight  .  -

Not officially diagnosed with Insomnia, but self-diagnosed; Lately getting to fall asleep has been such a struggle. Once hitting my head to the pillow, I find it hard to shut off my brain and leave my to-do lists and troubles of the day behind me. Can any of you relate? WebMD describes Insomnia as a sleep disorder in which you have trouble falling and/or staying asleep and speaks of two different kinds, primary insomnia, when your sleep problems aren’t linked to any other health conditions or problems, and secondary insomnia which would be linked to health problems. I would fall under the category of primary. With so much to juggle these days and a worldwide pandemic on top of it all- people unemployed trying to meet rent and pay bills, many mothers and students I know having to adjust to homeschooling, and many dancers I know worried about getting out of shape and losing all they worked hard to gain this past year, surely I'm not the only one struggling with sleep?!

BUT let me tell you! The following bible verses I am about to share with you have been such a source of peace and comfort to me ever since I discovered them. I've read these verses before, but somehow this time around they have resonated with me much differently. Though not a magic pill, instead, requiring discipline to keep the faith, believing the meanings of these passages to be true, I hope these verses will be just as much of an antidote to your sleeplessness as I have found them to be for me. The word of God is so deep and powerful and I truly believe it to contain within its pages healing cures and restorative truths for maladies of all sorts!

 Though all of Psalms 3 and 4 are beautiful and relevant and I will be sharing them in there full context below, today I want us to specifically focus on verses 3:5, and 4:4,5,8 of the NIV bible, just a few of my favorite verses found in the bible about sleep and resting, among others ( Psalm 127: 1-2, Exodus 20:8-10, Hebrews 4:9-12).

Let's get to dissecting it! 

Psalms 3

Psalms 4
1 LORD, how many are my foes! How many rise up against me! 2 Many are saying of me, “God will not deliver him.” 3 But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high. 4 I call out to the LORD, and he answers me from his holy mountain. 5 I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the LORD sustains me. 6 I will not fear though tens of thousands assail me on every side. 7 Arise, LORD! Deliver me, my God! Strike all my enemies on the jaw; break the teeth of the wicked. 8 From the LORD comes deliverance. May your blessing be on your people.1 Answer me when I call to you, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer. 2 How long will you people turn my glory into shame? How long will you love delusions and seek false gods 3 Know that the LORD has set apart his faithful servant for himself; the LORD hears when I call to him. 4 Tremble and do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent. 5 Offer the sacrifices of the righteous and trust in the LORD. 6 Many, LORD, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?” Let the light of your face shine on us. 7 Fill my heart with joy when their grain and new wine abound. 8 In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, LORD, make me dwell in safety.

Don't you love the transcendent word of God and how an age old scripture like this can speak directly to our hearts?! I wonder what words, sentences, or phrases particularly stand out to you in the above scriptures? I would love to know which and why, even if it's different from what I will be highlighting on!

Psalm 3:5 I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the LORD sustains me.

 Let's take a moment to acknowledge that waking up out of bed in the mornings is equally a struggle! But I love in this verse how David, the psalm writter, intentionally acknowledges that he wakes up and can go about his day because the Lord sustains him. If that's not good motivation to get out of bed in the mornings I don't know what is. It is not about doing life in our own strength people (preaching to myself, really)! The King of Kings and Lord of Lords has got our backs.

Psalm 4:4 Tremble and do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent.  
 This verse was SUPER convicting to me. I inturpretted the sin being addressed in this verse as the anxiety that floods my mind the moment I stop and try resting in bed. The bible refers to worry as being offensive to God and leading to sin in several different places- Psalm 37:8b, Matthew 6:25, 1 Peter 5:6-8, to name a few. I love how this psalm encourages us to search our hearts and be silent. I bet this process might look a little different for everyone. However you apply it, I hope it brings you as much peace as this practice did for me. 

 Psalm 4:5 Offer the sacrifices of the righteous and trust in the LORD.
 In this case I personally imagine the "sacrifices of the righteous" to be a surrendering of my will that wants to stay up and toil and/or fret. I know from personal experience that abandoning my will each night to me feels like a sacrifice, in the moment, but when I do and then follow it up with trusting in the Lord as the verse perscribes it amounts to better nights sleep, rest, and peace.

 Psalm 4:8 In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, LORD, make me dwell in safety.
 Matter of fact, this verse is a clear depiction of a cause and effect, one I so desire to be true of in my life.

What do you think about these psalms and my interpretation of them? I would love to know! Share with us down below if there are any other scriptures that are a source of peace for you and help you get some shut-eye at night!


30- Day Challenge

  • My Daily Challenge: Getting to sleep before Midnight.

  • My Daily Prayer: "Lord, God you are our creator, our maker, and you know our every need. You know we need rest, and that it is good for us, and though our society doesn't always prioritize it, I pray you would help us too. In Psalms 121:4 it describes YOU as the one that neither slumbers nor sleeps. I personally pray God that you would help me not to be deceived into thinking I can do the same. Thank you, God, for granting sleep to those you love (Psalm 127:2) and I pray for all of us that we would reap the fruit of being revitalized and refreshed from being well-rested and as a result, setting us apart for your glory.


  • The Approach: With a plan of regulating my sleeping patterns already established, which reinforces today's goal of getting to sleep before midnight, one other habit I would like to put into practice to help me get to bed on time would be to stop using all devices by 7PM. This includes not using my phone or laptop for any leisure activities or at all if possible.  Wish me luck! The idea is that this would help me have enough time for dinner and winding down in the evenings.

  • My Progress: 
  • Meal Plan (continuing)
  • Regulating Sleeping Patterns (continuing)

Check out the Full 30-Day Self Improvement Challenge here!

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