Attention! Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord, who serve in the Lord’s temple during the night. May the Lord, the Creator of heaven and earth, bless you from Zion! —Ps 134:1, 3
Strange time for adoration, you say, to stand in God’s house by night, to worship in the depth of sorrow —it is indeed an arduous thing. Yes, and therein lies the blessing; it is the test of perfect faith. If I would know the love of my friend I must see what it can do in the winter. So with the Divine love. It is easy for me to worship in the summer sunshine when the melodies of life are in the air and the fruits of life are on the tree. But let the song of the bird cease and the fruit of the tree fall, and will my heart still go on to sing? Will I stand in God’s house by night? Will I love Him in His own night? Will I watch with Him even one hour in His Gethsemane? Will I help to bear His cross up the dolorous way? Will I stand beside Him in His dying moments with Mary and the beloved disciple? Will I be able with Nicodemus to take up the dead Christ? Then is my worship complete and my blessing glorious. My love has come to Him in His humiliation. My faith has found Him in His lowliness. My heart has recognized His majesty through His mean disguise, and I know at last that I desire not the gift but the Giver. When I can stand in His house by night I have accepted Him for Himself alone.
“My goal is God Himself, not joy, nor peace,
Nor even blessing, but Himself, my God;
’Tis His to lead me there, not mine, but His
’At any cost, dear Lord, by any road!’
“So faith bounds forward to its goal in God,
And love can trust her Lord to lead her there;
’Upheld by Him, my soul is following hard
Till God hath full fulfilled my deepest prayer.
“No matter if the way be sometimes dark,
No matter though the cost be ofttimes great,
He knoweth how I best shall reach the mark,
The way that leads to Him must needs be straight.
“One thing I know, I cannot say Him nay;
One thing I do, I press towards my Lord;
My God my glory here, from day to day,
And in the glory there my Great Reward.”