It is amazing what the human body can endure. The record for consecutive nights without sleep is 11 days. Research tells us that it only takes about 3 to 4 days without sleep before you start to hallucinate. I am on 2 days of no sleep and I can tell you that the mental abilities (which were weak to begin with!) are beginning to wane. That is my disclaimer for any grammatical errors or typos in what is to fallow. I mean follow.
After 9/11, I had insomnia for four months. I suppose many people did, and as a pilot’s wife, the images that kept me awake were not the falling buildings, but the planes that flew into them. Since my honeymoon, I have had awful nightmares of falling planes. I suppose that goes with my territory. Insomnia made me think I was going to lose my mind. I could barely function by day. I would sit in a chair in the living room in the middle of the night and try to pray or read, and no relief came. Finally, God delivered me.
The Psalms were written as songs to be sung along the journey. They communicated faith. They told the story of hope in the community. They became an oral history of a people, and that includes us. Best of all, they unite us in a chorus of voices that are unified in one singular purpose: to sing praises and encourage each other that God does indeed deliver us.
Today I sing this Psalm in praise of what God has created. I sing in praise of his wonderful works. I sing with praise to our Maker, and I invite you to sing this with me:
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.
What does it mean to you that YOU are fearfully and wonderfully made? What is God saying to you? In the midst of your despair, do you know that all of his works, which includes YOU, are wonderful? Even in our lowest points of zero self-esteem, no self confidence, feeling beaten down and unworthy, God lifts us up as precious.
“When I awake, I am still with you.” Praise be to God, for those of us who remain awake through long nights. God is with us.
Praise be to God!
Photo by Cheryl Lynne Smith.