The darkness fell hours ago. The morning light is hours away.
Midnight—the suspended time in the middle, the dissonant chord without a resolution, the question as yet unanswered, the song without an ending, repeating, repeating.
Most nights we sleep through midnight, our long slumber breaths undisturbed, our eyelids dancing to a tune we will never hear in the daylight.
But there are those other nights when sleep is far away. The mind relentlessly runs a race to nowhere like a small animal on a cruel treadmill in some heartless laboratory. On nights like this there is usually another midnight in play, some unresolved dilemma robbing us of rest.
God knows about time—it is His invention. He created the sun to rule the day and the moon to rule the night. He knows the beginning from the ending and He also knows the middle. He is with us at midnight, whether we are asleep or awake, and He has something for us—a song!
A Song in the Night
Not an unending beat or an unresolved chord pattern, but a song of rest and peace, a song of praise. It is a song made for the midnight hour for it turns our unclosed eyes heavenward, away from the trial before us to the victory ahead of us, from the darkness of the unresolved to the promised dawn of resolution. It is a song about Him and not about us, about His power and not our weakness, about His success and not our failure, about His Word and not our worries.
The song in the night must be sung—it demands action—a deliberate transfer of thoughts from nightfall to morning light. As we sing of the faithfulness of God and rehearse in our minds the promises of God, a gentle smile will reassure us that all is well, even in the darkness.
“Why be downcast, O my soul? Put your hope in God!
The Midnight Cry
Soon, at some undisclosed midnight to come, we will hear a cry—not the weeping of fear, but the Midnight Cry of the Bridegroom. Jesus will return or His church. Then for us a day will break that will never end and the last midnight will have passed.
Remember your word to your servant, because you have given me hope. This is my comfort in my trouble, that your promise gives me life. The proud have derided me cruelly, but I have not turned from your law. When I remember your judgments of old, O Lord, I take great comfort. I am filled with a burning rage, because of the wicked who forsake your law. Your statutes have been like songs to me wherever I have lived as a stranger. I remember your Name in the night, O Lord, and dwell upon your law. This is how it has been with me, because I have kept your commandments. You only are my portion, O Lord; I have promised to keep your words. I entreat you with all my heart, be merciful to me according to your promise. I have considered my ways and turned my feet toward your decrees. I hasten and do not tarry to keep your commandments. Though the cords of the wicked entangle me, I do not forget your law. At midnight I will rise to give you thanks, because of your righteous judgments.
I am a companion of all who fear you and of those who keep your commandments. The earth, O Lord, is full of your love; instruct me in your statutes.
Psalm 42:5-8 NIV
Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon — from Mount Mizar. Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me —a prayer to the God of my life
Psalm 32:7 NIV
You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.
Psalm 77:1-6 NIV
I cried out to God for help; I cried out to God to hear me. When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands and my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered you, O God, and I groaned; I mused, and my spirit grew faint. You kept my eyes from closing; I was too troubled to speak. I thought about the former days, the years of long ago; I remembered my songs in the night.
Psalm 16:7-8 NIV
I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.
Acts 16:25-26 NIV
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose.
Matthew 25:6 NIV
“At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’
Lord Jesus, each morning the midnight hour seems far away, the one that is past and the one yet to be. Help me remember the song You gave me in the night all through this day. Let my song of praise be constant, just as is Your care. In Jesus’ Name! Amen.
You Can Have a Song in Your Heart
You can have a song in Your heart at night,
After every mile, after every trial.
Anyone can sing when the sun’s shining bright.
But you need a song in your heart at night.
The Midnight Cry
Words and Music: Charles and Greg Day
1. I hear the sound of a mighty rushing wind and
It’s closer now than its ever been
I can almost hear the trumpet
As Gabriel sounds the call
At the midnight cry we’ll be going home
When Jesus steps out on a cloud and calls God’s children,
The dead in Christ shall rise to meet him in the air.
And then those that remain will be quickly changed
At the midnight cry When Jesus comes again
2. I look around me and the prophecies fulfilling and
Signs of the times their appearing everywhere
I can almost hear the Father as He says son go get my children
At the midnight cry The bride of Christ shall rise.
© 2017 Stephen R. Phifer All Rights Reserved