Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have relieved me in my distress; have mercy on me, and hear my prayer. How long, O you sons of men, will you turn my glory to shame? How long will you love worthlessness and seek falsehood? But know that the Lord has set apart for Himself him who is godly; the Lord will hear when I call to Him. Be angry, and do not sin. Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the Lord. There are many who say, “Who will show us any good?” Lord, lift up the light of Your countenance upon us. You have put gladness in my heart, more than in the season that their grain and wine increased. I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety. (Psalm 4; To the Chief Musician. With Stringed Instruments. A Psalm of David.)
Sleep In Heavenly Peace
The singular desire of all men is peace. From creation man has sought for answers to quiet his troubling spirit. Conflict rages within him and man must find the means to salve the passions that roar within. Sin is the opium given by Satan to answer those desires yet peace is always out of reach. Driven by the mad addiction to find a settled harmony man flings himself headlong into the works of the flesh to experience the euphoria of self-gratification. At the end of every road is emptiness. Lives are crushed under the weight of looking for spiritual slumber in all the wrong places. Miserable, angry, empty and distraught men die with no hope on their lips.
David knew the peace that passed understanding. He fought the demons of the flesh. His most crushing defeat came when thought he would find peace in the adulterous affair with Bathsheba. It brought shame and despair. Eventually it would lead him to destroy the life of one of his noble soldiers bringing the wrath of God upon him and his family. Even in his darkest hour David found peace because he knew the mercy of a loving Father. Reading Psalm 32 and Psalm 51 the psalmist expresses the deepest feelings of the joy of forgiveness. David knew the peace slumber of God’s grace.
Peaceful slumber comes to those who call upon the Lord. Anguish is taken away by the words of prayer. Seeking consolation from the flesh will only bring more suffering but godliness will envelope the spirit with rest. Meditation on the word of God fills the heart with the calming ointment of understand that can only come from the Holy Spirit. The world is filled with those who are seeking answers in sex, drugs, alcohol and living free but finding only guilt and sorrow. Gladness of heart comes from trusting the Lord. David could rest his head each night knowing that his heavenly Shepherd guarded him and guided him in all his ways. No one can bring the blessing of safety but God.
Are you troubled? Are you tired? Give your heart to the Lord and He will supplant your desires with His love. His grace is so big we could never drain the oceans dry from it. Thank you Father for loving me so much.
The Christian has a deep, silent, hidden peace, which the world sees not, like some well in a retired and shady place … What he is when left to himself and to his God; that is his true life. (John Henry Newman, Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. 5, 1843)