It’s 5:00 AM, and I’m wide awake. The darkness is soft and inviting, but sleep doesn’t come with it, I can feel the wakefulness behind my eyes, so I get up.
Early-morning insomnia used to be my enemy, a cruel tormentor robbing me of my precious hours of sleep. Even as child I hated and dreaded the long hour nights alone, the struggle through the ensuing day to stay awake on little rest.
It took many years, but eventually my Lord taught me that all my hours are His, and that He is well able to sustain me, and that the hours spent with Him are never wasted, regardless of what time of day they occur. So now, in my thirties, there is no fear of the morning hours; this time is my time with Him, with the God who loves me so much that He can’t wait to start His day with me.
Who can resist an invitation like that?
I love the gentle mornings.
This particular morning, I know why I am awake. Only a few hundred miles away, a very beloved person to me is struggling with consuming darkness. I have been to see her, have stepped into the maelstrom that is trying to drown her soul, and the hunger to help her is very acute. It was on my mind when I went to sleep, it was on my mind as I tossed and turned, and now that my day has begun it is first in my thoughts.
I wonder what she’s doing right now, what she’s thinking, how badly is the Enemy tormenting her body and soul. I think of things I’d like to say, to do, wonder if they would help in the slightest. I wonder if I am praying for her the right way, if she cares that I’m praying, if she wants to be helped or if she’d rather I just leave her to die on her own terms. I wonder.
But I don’t wonder alone. God’s presence is with me, has been with me all the night. He did not sleep; and He does not wonder. He sees and knows, and cares more than even I do.
It was assurance in that reality that let me sleep at all last night; it’s assurance in that reality that comforts me this morning. I am filled with His peace, even as my mind and heart heave in disarray. I cannot have answers right now; but I have The God who has all those answers, and it is enough that He carries them within His heart; that great, loving, merciful heart that He shares so freely with His beloved.
And because He shares, I share. I write my thoughts in a journal, knowing full well He already knows what I’m thinking, knowing He could say it far better than I could, but that’s not the point. I read His thoughts in His book, ancient words written for me for just exactly this morning, speaking in ways that tell me He loves me in the precise way I need to hear it right now. Telling me too that He loves also her who is so near and yet so very far from me.
I get no answers from Him other than that; and yet, there is so much for me in that answer.
It is enough.
The sun is coming up now, grey light brightening the windows. Day is coming, and with it all the doings of life that must be done. I cannot stay in this cradle of quiet for long; but I am so thankful for the time before day. Come sunny skies or consuming darkness, I know the One that goes with me; and He knows me, and He knows those I love and long for. Simple answers there are none, but there is always this answer: Be still, and know that I am God.
It is enough.
~ contributed by Joelle Heilemann