In you, O LORD, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. 2 In your righteousness deliver me and rescue me; incline your ear to me and save me. 3 Be to me a rock of refuge, a strong fortress, to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress.Psalm 71:1-3
Psalm 71 is one of the weekly readings in the Compline prayer. Compline means to complete…as in completing a day. It is a restful and assurance building prayer time from the Book of Common Prayer for perhaps the most vulnerable time in our day…sleep. It is these moments we must trust God with our souls for we are defenseless as we slip from being conscious, and in control (so we think), to sleep.
Have you ever wondered why so many people in Scripture were spoken to by God in their dreams? One explanation is that sleeping is the time we are less distracted by the world so that we can listen to God. The more I think about it the more truth emerges from that last sentence. Not only are we vulnerable as we sleep and must trust God, but we also may be the most awake to God at any time in our day.
For this reason I have made a practice of journaling first thing in the morning on a question I put in my heart (and on the top of a page in my journal) the evening before. I wake up and then before checking my phone, I spend a few moments writing from a stream of consciousness. I am constantly amazed at how answers have come to problems or clarity to issues as I have slept. Now, I won’t be so bold as to say it is always God’s voice that speaks through my sleeping moments, but I won’t be timid about it either and say that it does not happen.
In you, O Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. Be to me a rock of refuge…
Resting in God (as evidenced when we sleep) is a good posture to hear a word from God. Try journaling for a week when you wake up about a question you placed in your heart the night before. I’d love to hear how it goes for you!