Reflecting on Luke 2: 1-14
It happened at night, says St. Luke. The shepherds were watching their flocks by night when the sky exploded with angels.
The Magi, says St. Matthew, saw a Star and followed it for up to seven hundred and thirty nights, finally finding the Child in Bethlehem at night. When Herod plotted to kill all boys of the age of two and younger, the Magi and Joseph had dreams at night that warned them to flee. Joseph then took the Child and his mother at night and fled into Egypt.
The people who walked in darkness were the ones to see the great Light.
God created night first, then day. Night is essential for dreams, for sleep, for healing, for the unconscious to rewind, refresh, and re-start. Night is where the soul comes out.
It’s Christmas, that nocturnal feast born in the winter solstice. The nights are long and deep in our western hemisphere. Oh, how we need them.
Linger in these nights. Rest in these nights. Take the whole family out in their jammies and go out to see the Christmas lights, dull in the day but gorgeously vivid at night.
Keep this Christmas season. Sing carols for your night prayer. Memorize “O Holy Night” and let its depth hold you as you sleep. Let your soul feel its worth.
This is no ordinary time. This is the dark, sacred night of Christmastide. In the quiet and the dark we perceive Him come to meet us, come to live with us, come to be with us.
Oh little town of Bethlehem, the hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight.
What traditions will you begin this year that celebrate the gift of night?
Kathy McGovern ©2016