Evening, December 23, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“Yours also is the night.” — Psalm 74:16
No, Lord, you do not abdicate your throne when the sun goes down, nor do you leave the world all through these long wintry nights to be the prey of evil; your eyes watch us like the stars, and your arms surround us as the constellations belt the sky. The dew of kind sleep and all the influences of the moon are in your hand, and the alarms and solemnities of night are equally with you. This is very dear to me when watching through the midnight hours, or tossing to and fro in anguish. There are precious fruits put forth by the moon as well as by the sun: may my Lord make me to be a favored partaker in them.
The night of affliction is as much under the arrangement and control of the Lord of Love as the bright summer days when all is blissful. Jesus is in the tempest. His love wraps the night about itself as a mantle, but to the eye of faith the sable robe is scarcely a disguise. From the first watch of the night even to the break of day the eternal Watcher observes his saints, and overrules the darkness and dew of midnight for his people’s highest good. We believe in no rival deities of good and evil contending for mastery, but we hear the voice of Jehovah saying, “I create light and I create darkness; I, the Lord, do all these things.”
Gloomy seasons of religious indifference and social sin are not exempted from the divine purpose. When the altars of truth are defiled, and the ways of God forsaken, the Lord’s servants weep with bitter sorrow. They should not despair, however, for the darkest eras are governed by the Lord, and shall come to their end at his bidding. What may seem defeat to us may be victory to him.
“Though enwrapt in gloomy night,
We perceive no ray of light;
Since the Lord himself is here,
‘Tis not meet that we should fear.”