365 days without fear[Editor’s Note: The following is an excerpt from Unafraid: 365 Days Without Fear by Gracie Malone. I received a copy of the book so that I could choose an excerpt, and I went with the devotional for November 22nd. Lately, I’ve been having a little trouble falling asleep and this excerpt was encouraging to me. I hope it can encourage you as well.]

When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Proverbs 3:24

The promise is set amidst a discussion about wisdom, understanding, and knowledge – contrasting these life-giving principles with fear and making them synonymous with the gift of sleep. Blessed is the man or woman whose sleep is sweet. Wisdom also promises you will enjoy lengths of days, many years of life, and peace (Proverbs 3:2). Following the pathway of kindness and truth, you’ll find favor with God and a good reputation among men (Proverbs 3:4). Because of your trust and your choice to seek God, he will make your pathway straight (Proverbs 3:6).

for they will prolong your life many years
    and bring you peace and prosperity.

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
    bind them around your neck,
    write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favor and a good name
    in the sight of God and man.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:2-6

Experts say that lifestyle factors in daytime affect the quality and quantity of sleep at night. Once again professionals find themselves in the good company of biblical truth. The three aspirations above, pursued, ensure restful nights. They are not only imperatives from God but they are traits of his own character. He founded the earth by His wisdom, established the heavens by His understanding, and by His knowledge “the deeps were broken up in the skies drip with dew” Proverbs 3:19-20).

When you find your mind churning during sleepless nights, try to identify the fear that is stifling your faith. Confess it to God. Turn on the lights and read the book of Proverbs. Pray for understanding and knowledge. Ask God for His gift of sleep.

Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble. Proverbs 3:23

[Excerpt from Unafraid used with permission.]