After reading a while I switched off the light and
looked out the window at the dark sky. The moon was a sliver against the
blackness and only two stars shone down from a featureless map. Nothing
else, just a fraction of moon and two stars.
I closed my eyes wishing I could see more. Surely the night sky should be a map of stars? Where were they? Where were the guiding lights I could not see?
Then I looked again and they were there in droves, a map of diamonds on black velvet.
But they were invisible until I closed off all other lights and let my eyes adjust. It didn’t happen immediately, it took time. Everything else had to be closed off to see the visible difference.
I thought of Isaac who went out into the fields at night to meditate and in the stillness he saw God’s gift to him. Isaac sought a wife because he was to fulfil the Lord’s promise of a line through whom the Saviour would come. He was expecting his promised wife to come and ‘One evening when he had gone out into the open country hoping to meet them, he looked and saw camels approaching,’ Genesis 24:63.
I remembered the Psalmist who said “My eyes stay open through the watches of the night to meditate on your promises,” (Psalm 119:148).
And I found it is when I take Paul’s advice to Timothy and shut out the rubbish of the world that I see the diamonds of God’s Word. They are like a map of stars in the sky but visible only when we give them total space.
Close out the world sometimes and let yourself adjust to being alone in total space with God’s Word. ‘’For while the training of the body brings limited benefit, the benefits of religion are without limit, since it holds out promise not only for this life but also for the life to come,’ (1st Timothy 4:8).
When we follow Paul’s advice, we will see a visible difference in the world around us.