Last night was one of those nights in which I chased sleep. If you have never had insomnia then you can forget Psalm 77 but if you are like me or you have ever spent a night chasing sleep, you might want to stop and think about what Asaph is teaching us through his experience.
Insomnia is defined by the dictionary as an inability to obtain sufficient sleep, especially when chronic; difficulty in falling or staying asleep; sleeplessness. This what Asaph experienced and I do quite often. Why is that? What is the cause? For some it is the worry syndrome, a sin for sure since we are commanded to not worry. For some it is a metabolic imbalance and for others it is being wired due to some exciting news. No matter the cause the results are the same: bone weariness upon arising.
In Ps 77 Asaph tells us what he does in those times. Note vs 1,2, 3, 5 and 10. He cries out to God, He recalls God and His attributes, He prays all night long, He consider a possible cause, and finally comes to the conclusion that if he verbalizes his frustration at the lack of sleep and its cause this too will pass. What do you do at times like this?
But more importantly than verbalizing his state of mind he begins to consider the character of God and how although himself has become a vagabond, God has been there even in the silence. He questions God’s character but then in vs. 10 realizes how futile an exercise this is because God is “Num 23:19 God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a human being, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not make it happen? It is when Asaph realizes this that he changes from “oh woe is me,” to “How Great Thou Art!”
George Rogers once wrote: A good man cannot rest upon his bed until his soul rests upon God. That is a truth we need to remember when we have nights when we are chasing sleep.