I’m a light sleeper. The faintest bit of light causes me to toss and turn all night. I have used sleep masks but they end up on the floor. Melatonin can’t touch this. I was on Ambien for about two years, but I didn’t like the feel/fog of it. The very best-case scenario for me?
There’s just one problem with the way ‘Dada’ likes to sleep; in our present situation, all four of us are in one room at my parent’s house. It’s an absolute blessing, after moving home from Alaska sooner than we’d planned and having renters in our own home; however, just try to imagine Lindsey and me, plus our two little ones in one bedroom all night long. Oh, the joys.
The struggle is real, people.
The kids want some kind of light and I want it dark as night. They win, of course, but somewhere around 2am, I wake up and close the door and turn off the lamp. Their retaliation? Both of my children reach and slap and grab in the middle of the night until they find my face. In the darkness, I feel a smack on my nose, eyeball, or mouth, until they feel the scruffiness of my face. Ben knows it is me by my “pokies”, as he calls my beard.
Last night, something different struck me. While it is still frustrating and startling in the middle of the night, I heard God speak through the darkness, “They are seeking your face.” In the darkness of the night, when they feel my face, they stop wiggling and squirming and their bodies become limp. They are at peace. They are comforted and can rest. I have witnessed this multiple times. I guess I’m a slow learner.
Last night, I took a deep breath and smiled, turned on my side, away from my four-year-old, and thanked God for the fact that He makes his face to shine upon us (Numbers 6). He never turns His face away from us and His graciousness pours out on us and our children for a thousand generations (Deuteronomy 7:9).
I am reminded and encouraged today that in my own darkness, I can seek the face of my Father. There may be a reaching, a grasping, a slapping and searching, but if I will be as persistent as my own children, I will find Him when I seek Him with all my heart (Jeremiah 29:13). In His presence, I am safe and comforted and my heart is at peace. The light of His face proves that my fears are merely shadows and His goodness will continue to guide me all the days of my life.
What about you? Do you seek Him until you find Him? Or, like me, do you seek Him while you feel like it and give up if He seems somehow distant? When you persist, what does He speak to you? What lessons have you learned as His face shines through your own darkness?
“Behold, the LORD’S hand is not so short that it cannot save; Nor is His ear so dull That it cannot hear.” Isaiah 59:1
Steve Austin is an author, speaker, and life coach who is passionate about helping overwhelmed people learn to catch their breath. He is the author of two Amazon bestsellers, "Catching Your Breath," and "From Pastor to a Psych Ward." Steve lives with his wife and two children in Birmingham, Alabama.
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