A song of ascents.
I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord watches over you—
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
Nothing drives people quite so crazy like sleep deprivation. In my house, sleep is sacred. Baby’s sleep, mum’s sleep and my sleep. At this point in parenthood (7 weeks in), I am fully aware of the effects sleep can have on mood, energy and life in general.
This amazes me: the Bible tells me that God does not sleep. He emphasizes the point by repeating it twice. “he… will not slumber; indeed, he… will neither slumber nor sleep.” And the reason for God doing so is for our good. Look at the poetry in this Psalm, each paragraph begins with what God will do:
- He will not let your foot slip
- The Lord watches over you
- The Lord will keep you from all harm
Just take a moment and take that in. The all-powerful, all-knowing, all-supreme God, creator of the universe, does not need sleep and he stays awake for your good.
That there is God glorifying Himself because He is all glorifying. But that’s not all.
Unless the Lord builds the house,
the builders labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
the guards stand watch in vain.
In vain you rise early
and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat—
for he grants sleep to those he loves.
God grants sleep. We can’t (and don’t) sleep on our own strength. It is God given. It is His grace.
I’ll never take sleep for granted again.