This beautiful chapel in Oberndorf bei Salzburg, Austria, is the site of the first performance of Silent Night. The assistant priest, Joseph Mohr, asked the organist, Franz Gruber, to put his previously written poem to music. Legend has it that the organ was out of commission so this simple melody was performed to a guitar accompaniment on Christmas Eve, 1818. The original text has six verses and the German lyrics express a great longing for comfort and peace. It was written at the close of the Napoleonic Wars when boundaries and governments changed and the future seemed uncertain. To “sleep in heavenly peace,” was a heartfelt prayer.
Today’s verse is a call to deeper trust. King David is encouraging his subjects to search their hearts and be silent on their beds. Rather than worrying over the future and wondering about finances, we are told to trust Him to provide and to fill our hearts with joy. What a wonderful affirmation that “heavenly peace” is possible, allowing sleep!
Good deep sleep can be elusive, especially during the holiday season! It is not “visions of sugar-plums ” dancing in my head, but rather to-do lists! More troubling are worries about bank balances, health issues or potential family conflicts. But if a king could trust himself to the Lord’s care with all his issues, surely I can!
I cannot imagine Jesus losing sleep because of worry. As a baby or adult He trusted His Father completely. When sleep eludes me I want to remember in the dark silence His amazing love and power. He is there and in control regardless of what I may be facing.
Thank you Lord, for providing that wonderful sleep in heavenly peace!