I have been looking forward to my month of nights covering the pediatric ward and it hasn’t disappointed. There’s something really special about being awake and engaged with the Lord at night. So many people in the Bible had incredible encounters with God at night – Daniel received many visions, and Samuel said, “Here I am”. There is an account of Jesus praying to God all night, and King David often wrote about night-time encounters with God.
Leading up to my first night, I felt the Lord put in a couple of things to ensure I would have the desires of my heart. He knew these desires before I had figured them out completely myself! I knew I was looking forward to nightshifts because it meant I would have long periods of undisturbed, out-of-schedule time to spend in intimacy with my Lord God. In my mind, I wondered how I would make the most of that time. God must have been looking forward to this time too – He set it up perfectly.
In the days preceeding my nightshift, I caught up with a various friends and we encouraged one another. I found myself re-evaluating where I was with the Lord, and what I was doing. One night, I even had this little moment where I thought, “I’m feeling really comfortable and no-one is attacking me. Maybe I’m not being effective!” When I asked my husband what he thought Jesus thought about that, he said, “Well, He’s probably like – ‘I’m protecting my daughter and she’s saying she’s complaining about not being attacked.’” Of course Jesus always protects me. I just really wanted to serve Him more, and act out the love I have for Him. The following day, Jesus re-affirmed many things in my heart. He showed me who I was, and what I was doing. I got a real sense of the passion and focus He had for me at this time, and I had a vision for what He was doing and how I would work alongside Him.
I had a very productive night prior to my first nightshift. Amongst the many things I did, I spent some time gathering passages about meeting God in the night. Here are several passages I found in Psalms – each describing various aspects of meeting God in the night.
- The authority of God over time and seasons
“The day is Yours, the night also is Yours; You have prepared the light and the sun. You have set all the borders of the earth; You have made the summer and winter.” [Psalm 74:16-17]
- Remembering God’s faithfulness, His law, and His testimonies
“I call to remembrance my song in the night; I meditate within my heart And my spirit makes diligent search.” [Psalm 77:6]
“When I remember you on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help. Therefore in the shadow of your winds I will rejoice.” [Psalm 63:6-7]
“I remember Your name in the night, O Lord, And I keep Your law. This has become mine, Because I kept Your precepts.” [Psalm 119:55-56]
- Delighting in the Lord
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the way of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law, he meditates day and night.” [Psalm 1:1-2
- The presence of God, and His victory
“The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, And in the night His song shall be with me – A prayer to the God of my life.” [Psalm 42:8]
“The cords of the wicked have bound me, But I have not forgotten Your law. At midnight I will rise to give thanks to you, Because of Your righteous judgement.” [Psalm 119:61-62]
As I embrace this month of nights, I feel excited for what the Lord and I will accomplish together. I know I’m going to grow even closer to Him as I:
- SOAK in the presence of my God
- REMEMBER and give thanks to Him for who He is, and for the testimonies He has given me
- DELIGHT in my Lord
- MEDITATE on the word of God
As I do, I know God will give REVELATION, just as He has always done. I want to say, “Here I am”, like Samuel did, see visions of God’s glory like Daniel, and develop the heart of intimacy and worship that King David had. Let the nightwatch begin!
“Behold, bless the Lord, All you servants of the Lord, Who by night stand in the house of the Lord! Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, And bless the Lord. The Lord who made heaven and earth Bless you from Zion!” [Psalm 134]