“In peace I will both lie down and sleep,
For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety.” – Psalm 4:8 (NASB)
It is a common complaint that sleep is hard to come by. Many reasons cause difficulty for some to get good restful sleep. Sleep deprivation is dangerous to the health of our bodies. When we experience insomnia or difficulty getting into the deep sleep where our bodies’ organs can rest and rejuvenate many other things can begin to happen. The list of causes is very long and the remedies nearly so as well. The Psalmist, David also wrote Psalm 3. There are certain similarities between these two songs. Psalm 3 is sometimes labeled a morning psalm (Psalm 3:5), while Psalm 4 has been called an evening psalm as we can notice in today’s verse (Psalm 4:8). In both, David is beset with suffering, injustice, and oppression. But we can see in Psalm 4 a change of attitudes in the psalmist as he worships in most difficult circumstances. David’s movement is from anxiety to assurance, as he journeys down the road of prayer and trust in God. We can trust God to keep us safe and to take our worries on Himself. We cast them on Him and He protects us while we sleep.
“He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man,” – Ephesians 3:16 (NASB)
The Apostle Paul often wrote long complex sentences and this verse is and excerpt from one of those time. Though the prayer for the Ephesian believers begins in verse 14 and ends in verse 19, Paul’s request is in verse 16. In this prayer he asked for only one thing: His petition in this prayer is that we be strengthened in the inner man. The result of this is that through faith Christ dwells in our hearts. “Dwell” is not a word used frequently in our day but in this passage Paul is praying for our faith to be dwelling in our hearts and permeating our whole being (personalities). “Dwell” refers not to the beginning of Christ’s indwelling at the moment of salvation. Instead it denotes the desire that Christ may, literally, “be at home in,” our lives. That is, dwelling at the very center of and deeply rooted within our being. It is a promise, if we let Him, that Christ becomes the dominating factor in our thought (attitudes), words (speech), and deeds (conduct). Being rooted and grounded in love is for our understanding the awesome extent of Christ’s love.
“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” – Psalm 23:6 (ESV)
Such protection, provision and love from God was what brought David to realize that the Lord’s good loyal love would go with him everywhere through all his life. God’s blessings on us, His people, remain on us no matter what the circumstances are in our lives. When we need substance he gives food and water…good calm water. He restores us when we are overspent. He makes sure we know the right path. If the path gets dark and scary we need not fear because He is there with us. And then, God spreads a banquet for us right in front of those who hate us. We are refreshed with anointing oil. All this goodness comes from God, from His promises. When times are up or down, in the darkest night or brightest day God has our back, and front, and both sides. He watches over us with His goodness and His mercy. Our reservation in God’s house is promised and secure. The ‘house’ is the presence of God, wherever we meet Him and worship. Not a specific building. “I will dwell, there” is our way of saying we’ll be frequently with God returning often to worship Him.