“By the breath of God frost is given…” Job 37:10a
What an amazing thought. Like, profound.
God’s breath. Wow.
God breathing in my little world, showing His great power and presence. He created the heavens and the earth with His voice, with words. And in the winter He decorates His beautiful creation with His breath.
Winters here in Canada can be pretty long…and drawn out…and long…and drawn out. sigh. Also our winter days are short. Like, really short. By December, the sun isn’t getting up until 8:40ish and its already going to sleep around 4:15. ugh. So you’ll understand why every year, on the day after the shortest day of the year, my husband happily announces to all who will listen that “the days are getting longer!!” Woo Hoo!
I mean, who likes long nights? I don’t. Seems like a lot of bad and sad things happen at night. Its easier to be scared at night.
A few months ago I was reading my Bible in the book of Acts. In chapter 5 the apostles were taken to prison for preaching the gospel. Verse 19 says, “But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth…” and the thought came to me – miracles can happen at night, too, in our darkest hours.
They may not seem big to some, but just the light of God’s presence at such a dark hour is sweet. Like His breath giving us frost, His light shining in our darkness is so amazing!
Acts 12 talks about Peter being in prison. He was sleeping and, “the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison…And his chains fell off from his hands.” It was night, a light shined and prayers were answered as Peter was brought up out of prison. A miracle…at night.
As I read through these chapters in Acts I remembered some verses in Psalms (my beloved Psalms 🙂 ) that have encouraged me over and over again…
If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me;
even the night shall be light about me.
Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day:
the darkness and the night are both alike to thee.
Its no wonder God tells us to meditate on His Word. How easily we forget!! Some verses in Psalms ends with the word “Selah” – its telling us to “think about that for a while!!” If we really, I mean really, stopped and thought about and believed what we read in God’s Word, how encouraged we would be. Sure, we all have our dark times, but if we would read and cling to His Word, and believe it, I think our nights would be a little brighter; lit up like a full moon night. Quite a while ago I started a little notebook with verses and quotes that I’d collected through the years. When I’m feeling down or when I’m overwhelmed, I like to get the notebook, prop it up so its right in front of me, and read the little nuggets, reminding myself of the many good things that I already knew…but had forgotten. Selah.
A few months after my mom and Carl were killed, I was reading in the Psalms and writing some thoughts in my journal. I wrote, “Sometimes I feel like I’m drowning in my grief…” One of the next verses I read was, “Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD.” Psalms 31:24. I had found a song in the night and my heart poured out, “I thank God for His Word and encouragement. How do people make it without Him?!” God shining the wonderful light of His Word in my darkness.
Lest you think I come through every dark night of mine quickly, and oh so victoriously, I have many, many…many…entries in my journals of, “Oh God, help me!” and I honestly couldn’t see any light shining at the time. At all. But you know what? I have been often reminded by one of my daughters, that it was through one of my long, dark times, that she now draws strength and encouragement from, because she saw me go to my room, to my little closet with my Bible and journal and read and cry out to God. And I got through that hard time by spending time with the Lord, clinging to His hand and not quitting. Maybe I didn’t “feel” God or “see” any light then, but He was there shining in my darkness. I especially see it now, looking back.
In the book of Job, it says that God “giveth songs in the night,” and in Psalm 42:8, David says, “…In the night his song shall be with me…” It was still night, but there were songs. Paul and Silas sang. At night. In prison. After being beaten. It was still night, but there were songs (oh, did I already say that?). Singing in our darkness…it’s our sacrifice of praise – but that’s another neat little study we’ll talk about some other day…or night. 😉
I can’t pretend to understand why God does what He does. His ways aren’t my ways, or His thoughts my thoughts. But I do know that I want His light to shine in my darkness…and in turn I want my light to shine in the darkness around me. Don’t you?
For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
and gross darkness the people:
but the LORD shall arise upon thee
and his glory shall be seen upon thee.