If you go back just a few hundred years, the thought of traveling at night was ridiculous. There were no flashlights or headlights. You could only see by moonlight and that made the trail just barely visible when it was fullest. Crescent moon? Forget about it. The obscurity of night is symbolic of the darkness brought on by sin. It is exciting precisely because the sin is an unknown adventure, a new drug, a new sex partner, a new expensive food, or an exotic wine from a land far away. They all fit in the category. Their mystery is their attraction.
I was in a group of inebriated sailors one night in Seattle many years and many responsibilities ago. Our cavorting brought us to the return-to-base, ferry departure landing too early. With time to kill, we looked for one more drink, one more adventure. About a mile to the south we saw a big, neon sign that advertised “Rios.“ Oh, we thought, a bar and maybe some girls. We headed that way; when we got close, it was easy to see that half of the sign was burned out. It actually said “Curios.” The place sold cheap souvenirs to tourists instead of cheap drinks to sailors.
The neon lights of Las Vegas, the Ginza, and the Broadways all over the world, artificially light up the night that was meant to be dull, dark, and off limits. It was designed to be a time of rest, family, and quiet after a day of hard work.
“Then Jesus told them, ‘You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going. Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.’ “ (John 12:35-36.)
Turning to the light of Jesus in the day gives us the peace of mind to turn out the lights at night and do what was intended for that time. Done well, it is the best time of all.