Wednesday, March 25, 2009

THE TERROR OF THE NIGHT



What is normal to an adult is often very frightening to a child. Costumed characters like those at Disneyland do not always bring smiles to the faces of little ones. Likewise, going to bed in a dark room can bring an array of fears before them. Ordinary shadows and sounds become sinister forces threatening to do harm as their imaginations run wild.

Thankfully, children outgrow these fears, but other terrors of the night are not as easily overcome. Many adults, Christians among them, also find the nighttime disturbing, as worries about tomorrow and an uncertain future invade their minds like monsters in a child’s room. Rather than facing the imaginary villains of a child’s overactive imagination, they confront fears and anxieties that are very real, robbing them of the peace and rest which is the believer’s portion. The terrors of the night wear many masks. Perhaps it is a great burden for a lost loved one, a health or financial concern, a son or daughter going astray, or a job loss that keeps you awake in the night season.

Where will you turn in such an hour? Looking at Psalm 91 we discover that the author found comfort and assurance in the presence of the Almighty (verses 1, 2). He sought refuge in the shadow of His wings and was secure under the watchful eye of the Omniscient God: “Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep” (Psalm 121:4). What a blessed thought! If this be true, then there is no reason to faint or lose heart when the terror of the night comes your way, because darkness is not dark to Him who dwells in inaccessible light (1 Timothy 6:16). God’s promise to the believer is sure, “He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD” (Psalm 112:7). This also is the promise revealed in the 91st Psalm: “Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked. Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation” (verses 5-9).

What a comfort it is to know that all our moments, as well as our tomorrows, are in the hand of the Lord, Who will not fail to work all things together for our good (Romans 8:28). Whether it is midnight or noonday, the Lord is with us. Grab hold of this precious truth, dear child of God; don’t resist or doubt it- God is with us. Satan will try to shake your confidence in the Lord, but God delights to make His presence known in the darkest hours. Lay down your troubled heart on the pillow of His divine love and take your needed rest. When the morning comes, God’s faithfulness will shine as the sun that rises in the East and settles in the West. Day unto day, night unto night, His mercies never cease. What shall we then say to these things? “I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8).


"Though the night be dark and dreary,
Darkness cannot hide from Thee;
Thou art He, Who, never weary,
Watchest where Thy people be."

Praying and trusting,

Pastor Tom

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