The Night Will Never Stay
The night will never stay,
The night will still go by,
Though with a million stars
You pin it to the sky;
Though you bind it with the blowing wind
And buckle it with the moon,
The night will slip away
Like sorrow or a tune.
Maybe this poem popped into my head in the shower this morning because I was thinking about the passing of Summer. Some people are ambivalent about Summer or plain dislike it, as they love another season so much more. But it doesn't last.
Even though we Christians are "children of the day," night does not belong to evildoers. My friend Tim taught me to consider the darkness of Deep Heaven (C.S. Lewis' preferred term for space) or the night sky not as empty, but rather, full of angels.
In the days before electric lights the night was long, especially in winter. It was common for people to spend many hours on their beds, but not sleeping all that time. In the middle of the night they would have the opposite of a nap, a period of being wide awake. During this time they would think or pray, during what the Psalmist refers to as the night watches.
Of course there is much physical beauty in the stars and moon, the smells and sounds of the night. There is nothing like sleeping outside on high mountains--especially if you can have your night and summer at the same time--and contemplating the glory of God in those uncountable stars. It's hard not to pray then.