As a former worship leader, I have always loved the Psalms written by Asaph. He apparently had a hard time living in his day; watching the godless prosper while God’s people suffered all around him. It comforts me to know that he was human and felt frustration even at God for allowing life to appear so backwards sometimes.
Beginning in January of this year, I found myself awakening suddenly at night in full blown panic attacks with racing heart and fearful thoughts, followed by hours of insomnia. I went through every medication I was taking to determine which was the culprit, causing this unwanted nocturnal upset. I spent the next few months trying different methods to improve my sleep but to no avail.
After several nights with very little sleep, I contacted my pain medications’ doctor for help. Sadly, he too was unsure of the cause and prescribed sleeping medications. Even they did not help.
Next, I underwent two sleep studies, which determined that my breathing was stopping as I slept and to save my life, my brain was jarring me awake and not allowing me to fall asleep again. Sleep apnea was the offender all along and once a CPAP device was prescribed, and my blessed normal mid-life man’s sleep was restored!
During those awful nights of fear and dread, I questioned God, wondering why this was happening to me. Now that I am on the other side, I understand that He created my brain for survival mode with the fight or flight response. I now see that what I considered awful and bad, was the very thing that was keeping me alive!
Prayer: Father, like Asaph, I want to think on and remember all that You have done in the past and recall that You are still in control and can be trusted even when I don’t understand what is happening.
Welcome back to our devotional writer!
Rev. Greg Harvey lives in Kansas City, KS and manages chronic degenerative disc disease with failed dual lumbar fusion surgery. His book, “Finding God Faithful in Turbulent Times” is available and may be obtained by contacting him at firstname.lastname@example.org.