``AT the end of the day I'm too tired to do much of anything. When I get home from work, I'm so spent that all I can do is collapse.'' Most of us can relate to this view of the evening hours. And certainly there is something appropriate about having a quiet, restful time after working hard during the day. But this doesn't mean that exhaustion and uselessness need to characterize our evenings.
We can gather strength at the end of the day by using this quiet time for thinking and praying. In the stillness of the evening we have an opportunity to ponder our day and to consider how we might express more of God's goodness in our work. We might identify areas where we can bring more joy, integrity, creativity, or unselfishness to the job. And we can come to see more clearly the truth, illustrated so vividly by Christ Jesus, that God constantly supplies His children with all that is needed for harmony and progress. We can pray to understand that man is not truly a fleshly mortal, cut off from his Maker, but the very image of God, His immortal spiritual likeness, possessing God-given strength and peace.
The comforting truths of God and His creation, brought out in Scripture, rejuvenate and fortify us. ``God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble,''1 wrote the Psalmist. And the book of Isaiah represents God as saying, ``Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.''2
When we read how Moses, David, Paul, and other Bible figures renewed their strength by turning prayerfully to God, it inspires us to look to omnipotent divine Love. And when we honestly acknowledge that God's love is indeed all-powerful, we realize that His care for man excludes weakness and weariness.
Recently I found myself totally drained of energy at the end of a day. I had worked until late in the evening the night before, and I was committed to an important meeting on this particular evening. The meeting was out of town, requiring two hours of driving each way, and so I had little hope of arriving home before midnight. Also, I was beginning to suffer with the symptoms of a cold.
Just before starting off, I did two things. I called a Christian Science practitioner, who agreed to help me through prayer. (Christian Science practitioners are people who devote their full time to praying for those whom they accept as patients.) Then I opened the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy.3 This is a book that has helped illumine for me the healing truth contained in the Bible. I opened to a chapter that provides spiritual definitions of various Biblical terms and read this definition of evening: ``Mistiness of mortal thought; weariness of mortal mind; obscured views; peace and rest.''4
As I drove out into the darkness, I pondered this definition. It occurred to me that I had a choice as to what kind of evening this would be -- one of weariness or one of peace. I realized that God was not saddling me with fatigue or sickness and that I didn't necessarily need to be at home to feel His comforting, strengthening love.
I continued to pray as I have learned to do in Christian Science. As the evening went on, I felt increasing strength and peace. The cold symptoms left me. The long drive home late in the evening was accomplished with particular joy and alertness. I actually felt refreshed when I arrived home.
Gathering strength at the end of the day is possible to each one of us. If we are willing to turn to God through prayer and study, we will find our evenings becoming times of invaluable renewal and replenishment.
1Psalms 46:1. 2Isaiah 41:10. 3The Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science. 4Science and Health, p. 586.
You can find more articles like this one in the Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly magazine. DAILY BIBLE VERSE: The God of Israel is he that giveth strength and power unto his people. Psalms 68:35