Beeps in the Night

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Beeps in the Night


We’ve all had those nights when a noise wakes us up. It usually takes a little bit for us to figure out what has caused the sound, either because we didn’t hear it clearly or we just weren’t sure from which direction it came. The other night I was awoken by something beeping. There was about a minute between each beep, so it took several of them before my mind registered that there was actually something beeping and it wasn’t just in my dream. Once awake enough, I knew it was a smoke detector. I had recently replaced every detector in our house but one, and that one was in my bedroom. I finally got out of bed and stood underneath said detector and waited. Sure enough, just a few seconds later and I was assured this was the culprit. I found a step ladder to use and reached up to release the battery. Fortunately, it was a newer model where the battery compartment is simply depressed on one spot and it opens to reveal the battery. I took the old battery out and proceeded to put the step ladder away and dispose of the battery. “Beep.”  “You’ve got to be kidding,” I thought. I set up the step ladder again, went and found a new battery and inserted it into the compartment and closed it up. I got down from the ladder and “Beep.” Back up on the ladder I went and decided to press what I thought was a reset button. Well, that sent the alarm into full Armageddon mode. It may have done some permanent damage to my ears with my head being so close to it, but I quickly hit that button again and thankfully it stopped. I stepped down and once again proceeded to remove the ladder when “Beep.” By this point, I was done with this thing. I got back up and removed the new battery. Then, I removed the entire unit from the ceiling and found that it was connected to some electrical wire. I depressed the wire connector and finally, I was simply holding the unit in my hand with no battery and it not connected to any wires – “BEEP!”  I looked at Debbie and said, “How in the world is this thing beeping!?!” I looked at the detector again to make sure there wasn’t another battery somewhere on it but found nothing. After several minutes, we realized it was finally dead and the event was over and we could go back to bed. But by now, I was good and awake, and I wondered if there was something I needed to do. Did God wake me up for some divine revelation? Did I need to get a pen and paper to write it down? Did He want me to read something from His Word or pray about some specific thing? After asking Him and waiting and thinking about it, nothing came to my mind, so I just went back to sleep.


We’ve all had “fun” with smoke detectors. And the stories almost always occur in the middle of the night. For some reason, the batteries don’t go bad during the day. Things like this always seem to come at a time that disturbs our sleep, our rest. A friend of mine once said, “Sleep is overrated.” He claimed he only needed four hours of sleep each night. Any more than that and he was just wasting time. Yes, I thought he was crazy, too. We all need sleep. God has designed our bodies to need sleep and to need rest. And God gives us that needed rest so our muscles and minds can recoup from the day’s activities. (Ps. 23:2; Mt. 11:28; Ps. 4:8; Pr. 3:24) But God never sleeps. Psalm 121:3-4 says, “… the One who watches over you will not slumber. Indeed, He who watches over Israel never slumbers or sleeps.” God is always watching over us, keeping His protective eye on us. It is so comforting to know that He is watching over me. We may never know what harm we have been shielded from by God’s loving hands, but we can know we are always being held in them.


Smoke detectors are good to have. They sort of watch over us while we sleep and can detect a fire before we unknowingly succumb to the smoke. However, the batteries do lose their power and the detectors themselves wear out and have to be replaced. They’re not failproof. But God is. And we can rest in Him with no beeps.