The Night Light

What father hasn’t been jolted out of bed by the cries of their child racked by nightmares?

Nightmares of gross monsters under the bed, or evil bad men hiding in the dark corners of the room, possibly a wicked witch flying around the ceiling deep enough into the darkness that they could not be easily seen.

What father has not calmly sat beside their frightened child with the lights on to convince them that there is nothing in these places?

The dark of the night seems to bring out the worst in the minds of our children. Thoughts so vivid they are undoubtedly real to the small child.

I remember some of these dreams from my childhood. Although I now blame much of my fear of the dark upon the original Kind Kong movie I saw on television one night with my older brothers and sisters. Though a fantasy, my older siblings did what they could to convince me it was real, that fear ran deep in my mind for many years.

Most of these nightmares are generally harmless and in most cases the ultimate answer to the problem is very simple.Winniepoo

   The Night Light.

The night light is an amazing invention. A very small wattage light bulb, with some cover, usually a theme known to the child as positive, e.g.: Toy Story, Cinderella, Dora the Explorer, etc; plugged into an electrical socket in plain view of the child.

This devise provides just enough light to supply a measure of comfort but not enough to prevent sleep.

A child awakened by uncomfortable dreams is reassured by the light that all is the same as when they said their night time prayers. The comfort of this simple light is enough to quell the fears, in most cases, and the child returns to their much needed slumber.

In our older children, we as parents often play the role of the night light in their lives. As the pressures of school or work build, thought of potentially devastating outcomes take the place of these childhood nightmares. Often these thoughts are not any more real than the proverbial monster under the bed, but our child needs reassurance.

As fathers we provide insights into the real situation that our children often face. We can speak in love and out of experience to the logical outcomes and the long term impact of many perceived issues.

In effect, we become the night light to our older children.

eyesLikewise, we as parents, sometimes face monsters of our own. In these cases where do we turn? What options do we have?

  I believe the answers to both of these questions in our relationship with God. Like the frightened child we often see in limited ways during our times of darkness. We awaken to what we perceive as a true situation and we cry out for help. All the while God is there providing the light that will calm our fears. Reminding us that things are not what we think. He is in control and we can rest in his light.

Our job is to understand this simple truth and teach it to our children so they can live a healthier and happier life, free from the monsters under the bed.

En Servicio Como Padre


8 Responses to “The Night Light”

  1. 1 shixtan May 3, 2009 at 10:42 PM

    Hi, I got here through

    “Though a fantasy, my older siblings did what they could to convince me it was real, that fear ran deep in my mind for many years.”

    Just wanted to say, I’m so sorry to hear that. It’s such a horrible thing to do to a small child to provoke their nightmares. I feel really bad about doing something similar to my sister when we were younger.


    • 2 David May 4, 2009 at 6:51 AM

      It seems to be the way of siblings. We don’t really intend any harm, but it seems fun at the time. We carry this same insensitivity over into adulthood. As parents and spouses, we often say and do things not intending to do harm, but the harm is still there. That is why we must learn that the first word in describing true love is “forgiveness”. We must be able to forgive those things that have been done to us and also forgive ourselves. Most of all we must accept forgiveness, starting with the forgiveness provided by Jesus. With this we can start on the road to true healing and a life that is full of a future and a hope.



  2. 3 Jennifer May 5, 2009 at 10:49 PM

    I had to get a chuckle as I read this post, thinking about how different my two girls are. Tonight, I had to turn on the hall light, the nightlight, and crack open the door for my youngest daughter. Meanwhile, my oldest daughter wanted me to close her door entirely, and do whatever I could to block out the light from coming through the door.

    On a serious note, this is a thought-provoking post that makes me think about Living in the Light, and then reflecting that Light in the darkness.

    God bless you for your ministry here at Dad Talk. You’re shining a Light right here.

    – Jennifer

    P.S. — It was a joy to have you at Getting Down With Jesus.


    • 4 David May 6, 2009 at 10:40 AM

      Thank you for sharing a little of your life, and for the kind words. Keep up the good work at Getting Down With Jesus. I will continue to look in on your posts.



  3. 5 Cyndi Warren May 7, 2009 at 4:44 PM

    I like this analogy. You wrote:

    “Like the frightened child we often see in limited ways during our times of darkness. … All the while God is there providing the light that will calm our fears.”

    Thanks for sharing, and thank you for your insightful comment on my blog.

    God Nuggets Blog


  4. 6 Brett May 13, 2009 at 3:56 PM

    Wonderful analogy! Our fears are in the dark, they are in the unknown. Having the Light give us Truth is so true. I would like to add as an adult, having the Light with us, keeps us from stubbing our toe.

    FYI – I found you through the Christian Blog website.



  5. 7 youngdad31 May 13, 2009 at 5:20 PM

    Very Inspiring. Being a young father in this generation, it’s tough to find good examples of fathers my age. I look forward to reading and learning from more of your stuff. Thank you.


    • 8 David May 13, 2009 at 7:12 PM

      Thank you for stopping by. I look forward to learning much from you as you continue to experience fatherhood. Keep your eyes on the objective, to teach your children to be mighty warriors through your example.



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