—Dedicated to the Benjamin Bottle Breakers
1. I'VE ALWAYS LIKED THE NIGHT: IT'S SO QUIET! I like these little lonesome sounds. At night every little sound means something—every little sound is important! There isn't much going on at night, so every little happening is important. All the little sounds that are unimportant in the daytime and are lost in the big bedlam of business in the day—all these sounds are suddenly important.
2. THE TINIEST LITTLE SOUND GETS ITS CHANCE AT NIGHT: The rattle of the antenna on the roof, the cat's meow in the alley, a distant bark of a dog, the lonesome whistle of the train, even a rare passing car gives kind of a sad, wailing sound as it goes by!
3. LISTEN AND YOU'LL HEAR IT: Wheeeeeooooshshsh‚ as it changes tone. It really does: whoooooeeeeee. It sounds like it's scared and running from something, trying to get safely home in a hurry. Cars sound like they're afraid of the night. The rustle of the leaves in the wind and that little rattle of the antenna on the roof—seems like they enjoy it—seems like they talk back and forth, 'cause that's the only time they can hear each other—because in the daytime everybody else is yelling so loud, they can't even be heard and nobody knows they're there.
4. BUT AT NIGHT YOU CAN EVEN HEAR A LITTLE TINY MOUSE scurrying through the wall or rattle around in the cracker bin—or you can hear them gnawing on the baseboard; and if you make any sound, then he keeps real quiet for a while, because a mouse is afraid of noise. He's real timid creature. He only makes noise when nobody else is making noise.
5. THE NIGHT IS BIG AND QUIET ENOUGH, THAT EVEN IF YOU'RE JUST A TINY BIRD, YOU CAN BE HEARD A LONG WAYS. The little birdy goes "cheep‚ cheep"‚ or the little dove will coo under the rooftop‚—but it's so noisy in the daytime‚ you can't even hear them. At night even the click of the heels of one lone straggler going home‚ or an early riser going to work, can be heard a long way. You can almost read their personality by the way they walk!
6. OR YOU CAN HEAR PEOPLE MUTTER TO EACH OTHER AS THEY GO DOWN THE STREET. You can almost hear a whisper at night clear out in the street. Whereas there's so much yelling and screaming in the daytime—it's so loud you can hardly tell one from the other!
7. BUT AT NIGHT, EVERY LITTLE NOISE COUNTS—EVERY LITTLE SOUND IS SIGNIFICANT: a child's restless whimper in his sleep; a door slamming, or a footstep in the alley, the flush of the toilet, even the hum of that transmitter down the street—these you couldn't even hear in the daytime, but they're clear and loud and distinct at night!
8. IF THE NIGHT IS REALLY BIG AND QUIET ENOUGH, THE SLIGHTEST LITTLE SOUND MEANS SOMETHING. It's just like that candle we were talking about: it can be seen miles away on a dark night, but you didn't even know it was there in the day. The littlest noise can be heard in the quiet of the night.
9. YOU CAN BE HEARD AT NIGHT—IN THE NIGHT—IF THERE'S NO OTHER SOUND! Even little old you can make a big noise at night, if there are no other voices raised!
10. RAISE YOUR VOICE! LISTEN TO HOW IT ECHOES AND BOUNCES AROUND. You could almost wake the dead up at night! Your voice sounds so big, because it's the only voice! However small you may be‚ you can be heard in the quiet of the night:—even a tiny baby's cry in the house down the block!
11. NO MATTER HOW SMALL YOU ARE, YOU CAN BE HEARD IN THE NIGHT, and you can think so good at night, 'cause nobody else's thinking bothers you. There aren't any other voices to interrupt you. Your thoughts just expand and they get so big, they fill the whole night!
12. YOU REACH RIGHT UP TO GOD AND YOU CAN HEAR HIS VOICE SO PLAIN—It's so easy to hear Him at night—the still small Voice in the wee small hours of the night! In the daytime, the voices of this world drown Him out, and it's hard to hear Him, because He doesn't like to shout unless He's pretty mad!
13. HE LIKES TO WHISPER LIKE A LOVER in your ear in soft, sweet tones. He likes to woo you in the softness of the night with His tender, gentle, loving Voice, whispering in your heart, when the slightest whisper can be heard—when there's no other voice to drown it out! It's so hard to hear Him in the daytime—the clatter, the noise, all the other voices—all the other racket going on—it's terrible! There's hardly even a closet where you can get alone and still not hear all that racket of the world pounding on your eardrums from the outside, as it rushes merrily on its way to Hell.
14. BUT AT NIGHT, WHEN THE REST OF THE WORLD IS ASLEEP, you can even go outside, walk past the houses, and they can't hear anything but you!—And you can't hear anything but God! The night is so beautiful—so quiet and so peaceful! We must work the Works of Him that sent us while it is day, for the night cometh when we can only stop‚ only look, only listen and be still and hear God's voice!
15. I HATE THE BUSY DAY WITH ALL ITS GARISH ACTIVITY, crashing sounds, screams and shouts and roars, its blinding glare, its burning heat! I long for the cool and the quiet of the night‚ when you can see the tiny stars twinkling away so quietly, so sweetly; they just wink at you; they just whisper to you—you know they love you! They talk to you without a sound!
16. YOU CAN'T EVEN LOOK AT THE SUN—IT'S TOO BRIGHT—IT BLINDS YOU! You can't stand it! But at night you can gaze for hours at the stars, watch them wend their way through space, brilliantly, softly, tip-toeing through the Heavens—the Heavenly corridors, lighting up the mansions of the sky; like the windows of Heaven!
17. YOU FEEL LIKE THEY'RE THE EYES OF ANGELS PEEPING THROUGH AT YOU, telling you they know you're there! During the daytime, you can't even see them!—The light of the sun is so bright, it blots them out! But at night when the sun is gone down‚ they come out to dance in the sky and wink at you again and laugh and play with you—if you'll come out and play with them!
18. IN THE DAYTIME, YOU'RE SO SMALL you feel
You're blotted out by the noise and glare‚
But at night, it's all so quiet
You know they know you're there!
God shows you around the universe—
You can ride on the Milky Way,
And you can watch the golden moon rise—
And hope it has come there to stay!
When everybody else is quiet—
And all the others are in bed,
You know that God knows you're living!
His voice kinda goes to your head,
And you get so high in the Spirit,
You feel you could touch the sky—
'Cause at night there's nobody closer
Than its great Creator and I!
So if your day was loud and weary,
And you feel you cannot be heard;
Wait for the night‚ My Deary—
When He hears the tiniest bird!
And if you think that nobody loves you;
Just wait for the sun to set,
And the stars come out to entice you!—
You'll know you're God's own pet!
19. I DON'T THINK I EVER WROTE A POEM BEFORE IN MY WHOLE LIFE‚ BUT I LOVE POETRY! Every time the next phrase came, I'd say, "I'm afraid to write that, 'cause maybe I won't have anything to go with it!" It's a simple childish poem‚ but it's a lot of truth!
20. SOME PEOPLE, AFTER THIS, MIGHT ACCUSE ME OF BEING A LOVER OF DARKNESS RATHER THAN LIGHT; but while the Scriptures speak many times of darkness with an evil connotation, the physical night, created by God Himself, is not evil, and is often spoken of as a blessing. Jesus arose a great while before it was day‚ so obviously He rose during the night to pray. The Lord appeared to Solomon in the night and granted him wisdom and knowledge, as he requested. And in the Song of Solomon, the woman went out to seek her lover in the night! David in the Psalms speaks so much of communing with God in the night seasons, instruction and songs in the night!
21. AT NIGHT YOU CAN BE FREER OF DISTRACTIONS AND EVIL SPIRITS WHICH CROWD THE ATMOSPHERE ALL DAY! Most of the things we have gotten from the Lord, and passed on to you, have come, as this one, when "He has visited us in the night" and we have "remembered Him upon our bed and meditated on Him in the night watches."
22. I GUESS I JUST NEVER GREW UP: I was afraid to; I wanted to always stay a little boy, 'cause I didn't like the way people got when they grew up! Us little kids got along so much easier together, and sometimes I think it seemed like we could see and understand things better than the grownups. They were awful dumb about some things that seemed perfectly clear to us!
23. YOU CAN HEAR GOD'S VOICE BETTER WHEN YOU'RE LITTLE—SO LOUD AND CLEAR! You have to become as a little child—for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven! When I was little, it seemed like God talked to me through everything; the sky and the clouds and the stars; the sun, grass‚ flowers, and the trees!
24. EVERY VOICE WAS SIGNIFICANT.—Everything meant something, and I wanted to know what it meant; and God always told me‚ and I wish I had written it down! But some of those things come back to me now—some little things I've been talking to you about—like the stars and the dust‚ and the little sounds—things like that!
25. WHEN I WAS LITTLE‚ AND I'D WAKE UP IN THE NIGHT, AND EVERYTHING WAS SO QUIET AND STILL‚ I'd think, Wow, if I'd make a noise now, everybody would hear me,—when usually nobody would even pay any attention to me!
26. I GUESS THAT'S WHY THE WORLD IS BEGINNING TO PAY A LITTLE ATTENTION TO US KIDS NOW—BECAUSE IT'S GETTING SO DARK—SO NIGHT! Darkness is stilling so many other voices that thought they had the answer. He says, "Be still, and know that I am God." "In quietness and confidence shall your strength be!"