My soul yearns for you in the night, my spirit within me earnestly seeks you. (Is.26:9a)
Our house is the only house in the neighborhood to leave a light on at night. We leave one small light on above the sink in the kitchen. Something about that light makes me feel more comfortable with the darkness. I often wonder what our neighbors think about our light.
The darkness of our neighborhood reminds me of an urban youth group I once drove to camp for a weekend retreat. When I picked them up in the Bronx, they were so excited about spending a weekend out of the city. They talked about the fear, crime and violence they were leaving behind. The woods would be a place of peace for them. However, as we left the city lights behind and entered the darkness of back country roads, fear descended upon the souls in the van.
As houses started getting farther apart and lights became more rare, the hopes of the weekend quickly turned to panic. The leaders started asking, “How come there’s no lights?” “Oh, my goodness, where are your neighbors? Where will we go to get help if we’re in trouble?” In the night, their souls yearned for the peace of feeling secure.
Lights can provide a false sense of security. Just as darkness can give an illusion of fear. Our fears do not magically disappear in the day light. We carry those burdens with us wherever we go. At the same time, anyone who has camped in a tent knows every night sound is magnified a thousand times in your mind. A chipmunk rustling in the leaves can sound like a pack of wolves circling the campfire.
I learned to walk at night without a light in the woods of Koinonia. It provided me the ability to see the stars without human influence. I often remember looking at those stars and saying, “My soul yearns for you, O Lord.” And peace would descend upon me. Those night walks taught me darkness does not mean you are alone. Only those things which blind us from seeing the power of God can make us feel lonely and vulnerable. I hope these daily devotions help you see the power of God at work in your life so peace may descend upon you as well.
Click to read: Isaiah 26: 6-9