Devotional Readings

The Attic Room

I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety. Psalms 4:8, NIV.

When I was a child we lived on the upper floor of an old villa. My bedroom was a little room with a slanting roof and a door leading to the attic. During the day I had no problem with this–I would even go into the attic to play. But in the evening, when it got dark, I was scared of this attic. In my imagination there were all kinds of creeping animals living there–snakes and other crawling things I was so afraid of. I imagined that they would creep under the door from the attic and come and wait for me under my bed. I didn’t want to go to this bed.

“Please, please carry me to bed,” I begged my parents. I reasoned that the animals under my bed would not know that I was lying there if they only saw adult feet coming and going. They would think it wasn’t a bed, after all, but only a chest of drawers, and that no small child had been laid down there. I would then lie very quietly so that no movement would betray me.

Often I woke up again in the night, and my fear would overcome me once again. What should I do? The animals were under my bed–I was sure of that. I couldn’t sleep because I was so scared. So I put my pillow under my arm and took a big leap, as far as possible from my bed, and raced to my parents’ bed as fast as my little legs could carry me.

Jumping into their bed, I crawled under their blankets and pulled the sheet over my head so that the pursuing snakes would not find me. Now nothing could happen to me. I was safe. Sheltered by the presence of my parents, I instantly fell asleep again.

You may laugh at my childish fears, but for me they were no trifle. The safety I felt in the presence of my parents reminds me that God is my Father who wants to give us this security in our adult lives, as well.

The psalmist found this safety in God’s presence. Only God was able to protect him. So he was able to write, “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”

Do you, too, want to flee to God when life’s fears and worries get too heavy to bear? He is waiting for you and will cover you with His sheet of love and give you shelter.

–Hannele Ottschofski

from A Word from Home
Ardis Stenbakken (editor) | Review & Herald (2005)
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