I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. Psalm 16:7 (KJV)
Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. Psa 19:2 (KJV)
What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. Mat 10:27 (KJV)
Join me as I turn my attention tonight to the second part of the first scripture quoted above; my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. It will be helpful to take a full reading of Psalm 16 before examining this verse more closely. The Psalmist (David) in verse 7 describes an experience in his walk with God, which we may well confirm to be a spiritual principle. The word “reins” literally refers to one’s “inside” and is used to mean one’s inner man or the unseen person. Many versions translate the word as “heart”. The other key expression you immediately notice is “night seasons”. This expression is of interest to me as one who often seeks to understand the times, and respond appropriately. It was no surprise to me that I was assigned to stay in the room of the “Sons of Issachar” when I lived in the NCCF family house in Ebonyi state. Of a truth, it was no coincidence.
The night season is easily identified by the absence of light and clarity. Vision may be limited, and one often needs a guiding light to avoid stumbling and collisions. The night season is also a period of reduced activity, when people are less busy and quietness prevails. Pomp and pageantry is absent and men are often left with their own thoughts and the reality of who they are in the night seasons. In this season, the Psalmist says his heart instructs him. I am convinced that God does bring us into this season once and again to communicate critical issues to us before causing us to enter into the light of day.
While many of us often long for daytime (for good reason), God is also much interested in the night seasons of our lives. The second scripture quoted above shows that God brings us into knowledge in the night seasons, while he speaks through us in the day. It is important for every believer to understand and walk in this truth. The night time is for the abundance of revelation. The third passage above also shows Jesus telling his disciples to speak in the light what they hear in the darkness and to declare loudly that which they hear quietly. At the mouth of two or three witnesses, every truth is established. Having said this, it is crucial to respond appropriately to the night seasons of our lives. The first thing not to do is start trying to light our own fires or make the night go away (Isa. 50:10-11). There is a very strong tendency for us to try to do things our way and make the light come again. The scripture says we should “trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon our God.” The next thing to do is to settle down and be still, not hustling up and down. When Jesus wanted to feed the multitudes, his first instruction to the people was to “sit down” (Mar. 8:6a). Scripture also says you should “commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. Selah.” (Ps. 4:4b). When this happens, we begin to hear the very words of God in our heart as we look into the Scripture, having laid aside all our thoughts and plans. Usually, what God is thinking is far beyond what we can think or imagine.
The instructions that come in those night seasons are usually what sustain us in the light of day. So they are crucial and sometimes destiny-determining. And they only come when we truly observe the quietness that belongs to the night seasons. If in the night seasons, we are restless and busy, we may be unable to surmount the challenges that the day brings because we were not instructed in the night seasons. Do you find that you are in a night season of your life? Then observe quietness and listen, for God is waiting to reveal things to you. I pray the Lord grants that we may always discern the times and respond appropriately. Amen.