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Proverbs 31 Ministries is a non-denominational, non-profit Christian ministry that seeks to lead women into a personal relationship with Christ. With Proverbs 31:10-31 as a guide, Proverbs 31 Ministries reaches women right in the middle of their busy day through free daily devotions, radio program, speaking events, conferences, monthly magazine, resources, online communities, and Gather and Grow groups. We are real women offering real-life solutions to women who are striving to maintain life’s balance, in spite of today’s hectic pace and cultural pull away from godly principles. Wherever a woman may be on her spiritual journey, Proverbs 31 Ministries exists to be a trusted friend who takes her by the hand and walks by her side, leading her one step closer to the heart of God.

Meeting Our “Night Seasons” with Truth - Encouragement for Today - September 20, 2017

Ruth Chou Simons

September 20, 2017
Meeting Our “Night Seasons” with Truth
RUTH CHOU SIMONS

“I will bless the LORD who has given me counsel; My heart also instructs me in the night seasons.” Psalm 16:7 (NKJV)

I unexpectedly awoke at 3 a.m. and was quite unhappy about it.

Now that all six of my boys were older and sleeping through the night, waking up worried about things I couldn’t do anything about came as an indicator to my heart that my current season of strain and busyness was taking its toll.

As I tried to fall back asleep, my mind raced.

Uninvited thoughts and lists of all the unfinished and unwanted situations in my life rolled through my head. And, as it is with most middle-of-the-night awakenings, all the concerns seemed unfathomably difficult and impossible to reconcile. Incoherent sentences beginning with What if … and Don't forget to … filled my mind as I tried to find solutions for …

The wayward child.
The wounded friendship.
The overwhelming inbox.
The routines still not implemented with the kids.
That thing she said that really hurt.
The unexpected prognosis.
The disappointment that remains.
The anxious heart. (Oh! To be anxious about having an anxious heart!)

We know where our anxious thoughts lead when our feelings and circumstances inform them, don’t we?

Nowhere productive.

Problems aren’t solved, tasks go unaccomplished and fears do not subside. Try as we might, we simply can’t worry or think our way to rest. 

But, in those dark hours of the night, and other times since, I remembered God’s Word afresh …

  • There is no true rest apart from resting in who He is, our shield. “But you, O LORD, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head” (Psalm 3:3, ESV).
  • There is no assurance apart from rehearsing the truth that we are His. “Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his” (Psalm 100:3a, ESV).
  • There is no better response than to pray with thanks. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:6, ESV).
  • There is no safer place than to remember His provision. “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8, ESV).

Sometimes the night reveals what we’re too comfortable to recognize in the light, and we admit our need. Those night seasons help me take God’s Word seriously, apply it to my life and realize God loves me enough to wake me up that I might draw close to Him and ask Him for help.

Sometimes the Lord allows difficult seasons that offer no answers or solutions, so we might find ourselves wholly submitted to Him, trusting in His care, dependent on His leading. Would we take the assurance of His Word as a lifeline otherwise? In the vulnerability of night, God draws our hearts to His when we have nowhere to run, nothing to distract and nobody else to hear us but Him.

What small or great need do you have today? Preach the truth of God’s Word to your own heart, friend ... and trust that the restlessness or weariness in your current season is the very place He's choosing to show you the relief and rest only He can provide.

Dear Lord, help me to want Your provision more than I desire my own solutions. Forgive me when I forget Your promise to both save and sustain me. Whether You remind me of Your Word in the night or by day, let me find rest in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Psalm 42:11, “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” (ESV)

Psalm 56:3, “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” (ESV)

RELATED RESOURCES:
GraceLaced: Discovering Timeless Truths Through Seasons of the Heart from artist and author Ruth Chou Simons is a journey through 32 timeless truths that encourage us to become deeply rooted in God’s faithful promises. Draw close to God while resting in who He is and remembering His provision to sustain you time and time again.

CONNECT:
For daily encouragement from Scripture through word and brush, visit www.gracelaced.com, or join Ruth on Instagram.

Enter to WIN a copy of GraceLaced by Ruth Chou Simons. In celebration of this book, Harvest House Publishers is giving away 5 copies! Enter to win by leaving a comment here. {We’ll randomly select 5 winners and email notifications to each one by Monday, September 25.}

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What causes you to worry in the night? Which Scriptures can you turn to today?

© 2017 by Ruth Chou Simons. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries thanks Harvest House Publishers for their sponsorship of today's devotion.

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