I play pickle ball with a dear friend who can put a wicked spin on the ball. Whenever I am playing on the opposite side of the net, and find myself swinging at the wind because the ball has taken a nasty bounce, I sometimes jokingly ask her, “How do you sleep at night?”
I find myself asking the same question of me after reading what Jotham said to the Jews in Judges 9. In a sense he told them, if they had acted honorably, if they had done the right thing, then he wished them joy. If they had not acted in good faith, Jotham called for fiery destruction of them.
I’ve had nights when I would lay awake, filled with regret or shame or guilt. I know what it’s like to feel the fiery hand of God’s anger at 2 AM. There were times I couldn’t – or didn’t want to pray, and I continued to toss and turn throughout those long nights.
But there were also nights when I confessed my sin, truly repented, and experienced the joy of the Lord – and a good night’s sleep.
We’ve all probably marveled at how infants can fall asleep so easily, and stay asleep so soundly. They have nothing to regret or feel guilty about. The sleep of a baby is generally peaceful and sweet, especially when that infant falls asleep in your arms, right?
I feel God asking me how honorably I’ve conducted myself in light of His holiness. Have my actions, thoughts, and words pleased or angered Him? Some days, I have to confess, it’s a wonder I am able to sleep at all.
As I go through my day today, I pray that I will act honorably toward God, that I will bring Him joy by my obedience. If I do, I’ll have no regrets. If I do, I just might crawl into bed tonight and into His arms, and sleep like a baby.