David says in Psalm 63:5, 6, “…My mouth shall praise You with joyful lips when I remember You upon my bed and meditate on You in the night watches.”
The ancients had divided the hours of the night into “watches”; for the Jews there were three of them.
The dark, still hours of the early morning are when unsettling thoughts emerge from the shadows and dormant fears awake to trouble the mind. Sleeplessness is a lonely affliction. Fear is a merciless foe. A weary mind that will not rest drains vigor out of the body, soul and spirit.
This Psalm was written when David was hiding in the wilderness of Judah. He had been betrayed by many of his closest friends – including his own beloved son, Absalom, who was now plotting to seize the throne for himself. Oh the worry, the heartbreak and pain that must have consumed David’s mind.
But David had a secret. He transformed those worrisome watches into worshipful watches and found his mouth filled with praise and his heart filled with joy as he remembered the goodness of the LORD. Rather than meditating on his troubles, worries and fears he decided to meditate on God in those sleepless watches of the night.
David decided not to feed his fear with worry, but to feed his faith with worship! That’s what you should do the next time you cant sleep.