They played the rest of the afternoon away, digging in the sand, chasing bubbles, and swinging on the old oak tree (the same one Daddy fell out of and broke his arm). Dinner came only after a bath for those two dirty-faced, dirty-footed little fellows, a tub full of bubbles and cups and pitchers to pour over each other. After their favorite mac and cheese, chicken nuggets and applesauce, it wasn’t long until their eyes were drooping and they were ready for bed. “The tired-er the better,” we thought, especially for that first night.
They fell asleep quickly, twenty-month-old Judah in the “Pack and Play” and four year-old Silas by his own choice next to his little brother on the twin-sized airbed. We listened through the rest of the evening, but never heard a peep.
However, at 4:52 a.m. I sensed something by my bed and woke to a small figure standing there in the starlight filtering through the curtains. Dark in the country is not like dark in the city. We have no streetlights—unless you live entirely too close to an uprooted city slicker who thinks he needs one, and we don’t. We have no concrete to reflect the moonlight either. When it’s dark, it’s dark, and if you are not used to navigating by God’s natural night lights, you think you woke up in a tomb.
“Silas,” I whispered, “what’s wrong?”
“All this dark is keeping me awake,” he said quite seriously, and even though I was sleepily thinking, “All this dark is supposed to keep you asleep!” I knew exactly what he meant. Even though we had left a nightlight right by his bedroom door, it was far darker than he was used to, and when he woke it troubled him.
By then Granddad had wakened as well, and he took him back to bed and lay with him until he was once again snoring his soft little boy snores, not much more than five minutes afterward. He slept another three hours with no problem at all.
I thought sometime later that week that this little boy had it right. The dark should be keeping us awake.
Even the Old Testament faithful understood the concept of walking in the light. O house of Jacob, come let us walk in the light of Jehovah,
Isa 2:5. It seemed natural, then, for the Son to claim to be the light as well. I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life, John 8:12. And so, as children of God, we, too, are lights. For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of night or of darkness, 1 Thes 5:5.
Unfortunately, the light has come into the world and the people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil, John 3:19. As “children of light” we should be opposite the world. We should not love the darkness; we should hate it.
This will come more naturally if we mature to the point that we don’t just walk in the light and not walk in the darkness. Look at Eph 5:8: for at one time you were darkness, but now are light in the Lord. Do you see that? Light isn’t just something you walk in, it is something you become. Just as at one time you didn’t just walk in the darkness, you were darkness. We have completely changed our essence. No wonder we are supposed to hate the dark. No wonder the mere presence of it in the world, among our neighbors, our friends and even our family, should be keeping us awake at night.
All this dark is keeping me awake Lord, should be a lament on every Christian’s tongue. Not only that, we should be actively trying to rid the world of that very darkness. Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, Yes, rather, reprove them, Eph 5:11.
If the darkness in the world isn’t enough to keep a “child of light” awake, perhaps he has become something else.
Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of Jehovah is risen upon you. For, behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the peoples; but Jehovah will arise upon you, and his glory shall be seen upon you. And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Isa 60:1-3.