One of my granddaughters has become afraid of the dark. She needs a night-light on in her room or the hallway and her door cracked open in order to fall asleep. The darkness makes her feel insecure and apprehensive. Because there are fewer distractions in the dark, her imagination seems to take off and her fears loom larger.
I’m sure there are many adults, like my granddaughter, who are also afraid of the dark. Not the dark of night, but the dark times in life when pressures, problems, pain and even persecution envelope us in a fog of confusion or depression … those spiritually dark times when God seems far away.
If you are one of those currently experiencing darkness, and the fear that can often come with it, I want to encourage you. God is active in the dark!
God is present in the darkness
What is the current darkness that you are experiencing?
What comfort or encouragement do you receive from the following verses? Genesis 1:2; Exodus 20:21; 1 Kings 8:12; Psalm 23:4, 97:2 and 139:11-12. Write out the specific phrases and explain in your own words why they are meaningful.
Whom do you know who is afraid of the dark—whether it’s nighttime darkness or the darkness of life? Which of these verses will you share with him or her?
What are some of the treasures to be found in the darkness? Read Isaiah 45:3, Psalm 63:6-8, Exodus 16:10 and Mark 9:7.
God changes things in the darkness
Describe the change in the Israelites’ circumstances that took place at night. Read Exodus 14:1-31.
What seems to be blocking your path? Could God be removing it in the darkness?
How did God’s relationship with people change radically one night? Read Luke 2:1-15.
Describe the change that the shepherds witnessed firsthand. See Luke 2:16-20 and Philippians 2:5-7.
If God entered time and space as a baby at night, why do you think He can’t enter into your darkness, bringing peace and joy?
Comparing John 20:20 with Luke 24:1-8, describe the history-splitting change that took place at night.
How is this historic change still causing change today? Read Ephesians 1:19-23, Romans 10:9-10 and Romans 8:5-12.
From the following verses, describe the changes that took place at night: Daniel 6:16-22, Acts 12:5-11 and Acts 16:22-34.
What prison holds you captive? What binds or hinders you from serving God? Could God now be at work to set you free even though you see no outward evidence?
God speaks in the darkness
Read Genesis 27:41-28:22. Describe Jacob’s circumstances as well as what his emotional state could have been in Genesis 28:11.
How did his circumstances remain somewhat the same, while his emotional and spiritual state changed during the night? What brought about the change?
How did God change Samuel one night from a boy to a prophet?
See 1 Samuel 3:1-21. What was the key to the change?
What would Samuel have missed if he had refused to get up at night to listen to God’s Word because he was too tired?
Is it possible that you would discover more of your life’s purpose if you spent time reading your Bible, listening for the voice of God to speak to you through it? Could God be calling you to read your Bible in the night … either in the midst of your difficult circumstances, or in the literal night as you stay up later or rise earlier in order to spend time with Him?
What radical truth did Nicodemus learn when Jesus talked to him at night? Read John 3:1-8.
When was the last time you heard God’s voice, either during the night, or when you were going through a difficult time?
Why do you think God speaks to us in the darkness?
If you are living in the darkness …
of an obstacle blocking your progress,
of a humanly hopeless situation,
of death or disease or divorce,
of prison walls that bind or suffocate you,
of fear or failure or frustration,
of doubt or danger,
of confusion or depression …
Be assured. God is with you, He will change things, and He has a Word for you. So … go ahead. Turn on the Light! ©2012 Anne Graham Lotz