Yesterday we looked at the value of solitude – times of quietness and obscurity. We may often consider these times as early in the morning, or a retreat away from home. How about the lonely hours at night? These were some of the most productive times for Paul. Consider the following two examples:
“And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us”” (Acts 16:9).
“The following night the Lord stood by him and said, “Take courage, for as you have testified to the facts about Me in Jerusalem, so you must testify also in Rome”” (Acts 23:11).
The first appearance was for direction in Paul’s ministry and the second was for encouragement because the Lord knew what Paul was facing and would face in the near future. In both cases, these appearances were in view of more effective ministry in Paul’s immediate future. In the first case, God intended to save a whole household and start a new church in Philippi. In the second instance, God was moving the chess pieces so Paul could testify of Jesus before kings and rulers.
I am learning to use pain and wakeful times at night to commune with my Lord. They are becoming more and more valuable as I ask the Spirit to speak God’s mind to me. Are you expecting God to communicate to you at night, or is prayer and communion with Him only for certain times?
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