"The sleep of a laborer is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but the abundance of a rich man permits him no sleep. I have seen a grievous evil under the sun: wealth hoarded to the harm of its owner, or wealth lost through some misfortune, so that when he has a son there is nothing left for him." Ecclesiastes 5:12-14
In many ways I sympathize with the rich man portrayed by Solomon, even though I am not rich. He has trouble sleeping at night. This is a problem I can understand because whenever I am under pressure or whenever I am worried or whenever I have problems I can't easily solve I toss and turn all night long. Meanwhile my sweetheart sleeps contentedly next to me, blissfully unaware that I doze off and wake up every 15 minutes.
Over the years I have tried many remedies--taking a hot shower, drinking a glass of milk, counting sheep, praying through my problems, reading a book, and watching TV. I should mention that this doesn't happen all the time--or even most of the time--but it happens often enough that when I read this passage I didn't think about someone else. I thought about me.
"The sleep of a laborer is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but the abundance of a rich man permits him no sleep." Here is the picture of the classic Type A personality. Hard-driving, demanding of himself and everyone around him. A workaholic. Up early. In bed late. Stressed out. Worried about protecting his investments. Doesn't exercise because it's a waste of time. Doesn't eat right because he doesn't have time. Doesn't spend much time with the kids because he's got a business to run. His wife? Which one? His first? His second? His third? Or his mistress? Call 911. The guy is on the A Train heading toward Heart Attack City. He's living on the edge with a time bomb ticking inside his chest.
This is 1 of 100 devotionals from an ebook called Something New Under the Sun.
Dr. Ray Pritchard is the president of Keep Believing Ministries, in Internet-based ministry serving Christians in 225 countries. He is the author of 27 books, including Stealth Attack, Fire and Rain, Credo, The Healing Power of Forgiveness, An Anchor for the Soul and Why Did This Happen to Me? Ray and Marlene, his wife of 37 years, have three sons-Josh, Mark and Nick, two daughters-in-law--Leah and Vanessa, and two grandsons--Knox and Eli. His hobbies include biking, surfing the Internet, and anything related to the Civil War.