When I came ‘back to bed’ to read my Bible (after letting the chickens out of the barn), God said to read Psalm 119:56. I opened my NIV Student Study Bible that contains little insights or comments regarding verses or sections of the Word. I often find them quite appropriate to the moment and today was another one of those days. Immediately, I noticed the bold highlighted verse and comment right above Psalm 119:56, the verse I was to read. Remember, I just returned to bed and am ‘lying in bed.’
“Lying in Bed: “The psalms consider every aspect of life – even the thoughts that come while lying in bed at night. You can easily become obsessed with other people’s wrongs against you. But you can also turn your thoughts to God and quiet your anxieties while strengthening your commitment.”
Verse 56, my verse, followed this comment: “This has been my practice: I obey your precepts.”
Since I was a very little girl, I have prayed for people before I go to sleep. Up until I was about 25 I had a list that took me probably 20 minutes to ‘recite’. I can still reel off most the list to a certain point even though some of those people, like my mom, my Nana, and my grandparents, have passed away. Some people on the memory list I have no idea where they are on this earth while others are still part of my life.
The little blurb listed a few more Psalms that refer to ‘lying in bed’. I looked them up and I can honestly say that I have experienced all of the emotions, thoughts, blessings, joys, and probing that David wrote about. I have included a few other Scriptures to show the concepts and experiences are not limited to the Psalms.
“You can be angry, but do not sin! Think about this as you lie in bed, and calm down” (Psalm 4:4, Ephesians 4:26)
“I am worn out with groaning; all night I drench my bed with tears, flooding my couch till it swims” (Psalm 6:6, Luke 7:38).
“I bless Adonai (the LORD), my counselor; at night my inmost being instructs me” (Psalm 16:7, John 14:26).
“You probed my heart, you visited me at night, and you assayed me without finding evil thoughts that should not pass my lips” (Psalm 17:3, John 3).
“I am as satisfied as with rich food; my mouth praises you with joy on my lips when I remember you on my bed and meditate on you in the night watches” (Psalm 63:5-6, Philippians 4:8).
“On the day of my distress I am seeking Adonai (the LORD); my hands are lifted up; my tears flow all night without ceasing; my heart refuses comfort” (Psalm 77:2, 2 Peter 2:6-7).
“Because of my loud groaning, I am just skin and bones. I am like a great owl in the desert, I’ve become like an owl in the ruins. I lie awake and become like a bird alone on the roof” (Psalm 102:7-8, Isaiah 41:10).
“At midnight I rise to give you thanks because of your righteous rulings” (Psalm 119:62, Acts 16:25).
“For Adonai (the LORD) takes delight in his people, he crowns the humble with salvation (yeshua). Let the faithful exult gloriously, let them sing for joy on their beds” (Psalm 149:4-5).
‘Lying in bed’ is my special prayer closet where God has challenged me, blessed me, encouraged me, allowed me to weep, think, and grow. He has given me visions. He has shown me events in my life (from before I have actual mental memories) that brought healing to my life. He has even woken me up in the middle of the night to pray for some obscure person I haven’t thought about in years – some from childhood or friends of my parents. I still pray for friends, family, my husband and children, and I also include praying for myself. Then I listen, listen intently for that still, small voice of the Spirit to speak to my mind and my heart that will take me on another unique spiritual journey while ‘lying in bed.’