by Michelle Welch
And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.”
Acts 16:25 (NIV)
And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.”
Matthew 25:6 (NIV)
“And Moses said, Thus saith the LORD, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt:”
Exodus 11:4 (NIV)
Sometimes as I sit and ponder my scriptures, the depth of the mistakes I have made come up to chip away at my new life in Christ. I can feel the darkness of my past like a physical presence, suffocating me. I have never liked the night with it’s dreams, empty shadows, and strange sounds. When all around me are safe in their slumber and the house is still, I find myself pacing the floors, afraid of the visions I know will cloud my nighttime hours. My mind races with thoughts of things I should have done differently, paths I could have avoided, choices gone awry. It is often midnight before I find myself finally able to sleep.
It came to me that many turning points in the scriptures happen at midnight. Midnight is the darkest hour of the night, farthest from the dawn or dusk, empty of yesterday and not quite tomorrow. The dictionary defines it as “the middle of the night”. As I read that, God impressed upon me that it is the turning point. The moment at which the darkness begins to recede and we head towards the light. God turned the lives of the Israelites around at midnight when He sent the angel of death to prove He meant what He said. Paul began to sing at midnight just before the walls of the prison came crashing down, freeing them from bondage and proving that God was who He said He was. Christ Himself reminds us to be prepared, even in the darkest part of the night, as we never know when He will come to change our circumstances forever.
My friend Sarah Kelly wrote “About Midnight” which is what she calls a “why God” song. Each time I hear it, God whispers to me that He is here with me during my midnight hours. He is turning my darkness into light and helping me to round the corner as I head towards His dreams for me. Midnight is a scary place to be, full of visions and words and shadows that wish only to bring you pain. But when we realize that it is just a moment in time, sixty seconds of a twenty four hour day, we can move quickly past that darkest moment. We can grasp His Hand that is outstretched, letting His grace and mercy pull us up towards the new dreams filled with new chances. 1 John 2:8 tells us that “Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.”
Dearest Father God, let us feel the warmth of You on our faces as we lift our eyes to you. Fill our lives with Your light, helping us move out of our darkness. Help us to remember that at midnight we are at the closest point to You, needing only to reach out our hands to feel You there beside us. I pray grace on those who need it, Your presence in our daily walk, and Your mercy when we make mistakes. In the name of Your most loving Son, Christ Jesus, Amen.
Copyright © 2011, Michelle Welch, team member Breath Of Life Women’s Ministries. Photography by Michelle Welch, all rights reserved.
Song About Midnight by Sarah Kelly can be found at http://youtu.be/i3TVJoN4nZ0
Information about Sarah is available at www.sarahkelly.com
Scripture from KJV and NIV Bibles Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.