Why Do We Sleep?

Dear Reader,

Have you ever wondered this? Why God made us to need sleep? He doesn’t sleep (Psalm 121:4: “He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep”; NKJV). I have often thought that maybe God just knows we need a break, a chance to restart and put the past behind us daily. Since God does not Himself sleep, I don’t think He gave us sleep to teach us about Himself directly. But maybe He gives it to us to teach us about our own mortality, about death and resurrection. Sleep in the Bible and throughout human thought is equated with death (Psalm 13:3: “Consider and hear me, O LORD my God;Enlighten my eyes,  Lest I sleep the sleep of death”).

But another reason occurred to me recently: perhaps sleep also forces us to stop relying on ourselves. We are at our most vulnerable when we are asleep.  This is why we pray, “Now I lay me down to sleep; I pray the Lord my soul to keep.” We have to have a certain amount of trust even to fall asleep. You would not fall asleep in a room full of enemies. And it is knowing that there is One who does not sleep but who watches out for us that allows us to let go and lose consciousness. Psalm 4:8 says, “I will both lie down in peace, and sleep;For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.”

And that is why we can count sleep as a blessing: “For so [God] gives His beloved sleep” (Psalm 127:2).

Good Night.

Nebby

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