Don’t expect me to fall sleep in public. Before our trip to Zambia I stayed up all night mending clothes and packing, convinced I would have no trouble sleeping on the twelve-hour flight across the Atlantic. But, you guessed it, sleep never came.
On another trip I had the same problem. After flying into Delhi on a Saturday evening and leading worship with my team, we rushed to board the night train for the 250 mile trip to Lucknow. Our plan was to sleep in our clothes (it was a public conveyance, after all), get up and lead worship for the Sunday service the following morning.
Again sleep eluded me. My narrow berth separated me from the aisle by only a thin curtain, and a couple of times I was startled by someone brushing by on their way to the toilet. I resolved that since God brought me on this trip, he would somehow supply my needs as I did his work – with or without sleep.
As I lay in my little space I prayed, admitting I was also concerned about how my hair might look in the morning. I thought about using a little water and a comb, but that would mean me sitting upright while it dried. No, sleep would be better for my appearance and my attitude, I reasoned. You can read about God’s answer to my concerns that night in a previous post.
I peered through my window, still amazed I was actually in India. In the passing shadows I could see tiny dwellings, cooking fires smoldering, and the outline of buildings. Nothing looked familiar.
Then I spotted the moon, looking exactly like it did from my front porch in Oregon. From the moving train the moon was an anchor point, a brilliant thing to remind me God hadn’t changed and that he was with me even on the opposite side of the world.
“In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8 NIV).
After talking to God about my trivial concerns, my worries for my safety and my appearance melted away. I laid down and slept peacefully.
by Kathy Sheldon Davis