Today I share a poem from poet Jane Kenyon. Let it fall upon your ears and heart in a way that encourages you during this Advent season.

Let Evening Come

by Jane Kenyon

Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.

Let the cricket take up chafing
as a woman takes up her needles
and her yarn. Let evening come.

Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
in long grass. Let the stars appear
and the moon disclose her silver horn.

Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
Let the wind die down. Let the shed
go black inside. Let evening come.

To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
in the oats, to air in the lung
let evening come.

Let it come, as it will, and don't
be afraid. God does not leave us
comfortless, so let evening come.

     © Jane Kenyon, Let Evening Come: Poems (Graywolf Press, 1990)

There are many things surrounding us that can make us fearful, but as this poem reminds us, the passage of time, the coming of the evening, the changes that we see and don't necessarily want or understand, do not need to leave us paralyzed with fear. Even as we see the many signs that things are changing, that the world and all of its inhabitants seem to be moving towards a kind of evening, there is something we must remember:

God does not leave us comfortless.

If we look closely at those signs of evening, all of those signs can be, to us, actually tokens of God's continuing presence in this world. The details of this world happen because of the ongoing intervention of their Creator. And with a God still present and active in this world, there is always reason to hope, always someone to pray to, always good work we can join into, even as the evening comes.

Reminders of the comfort God gives to this world are particularly present at this time of Advent. But that doesn't necessarily mean that we see and read them that way. The things that make us fearful compete loudly for our attention and we have to look for and pay attention to the signs of God's abiding comfort. Do the signs of the coming evening make me so fearful that I cannot see the signs of God's comfort? Do they blind me to the realities that are evidence of God's love for this world?

demdaco willow tree figurine collection

Jesus' entry into this world was and remains the most potent reminder given that God loves this world and all the creatures who inhabit it. The various reminders of his incarnation that are around us this year can be, if paid attention to, strong reminders of the comfort God sent through the human form of Jesus. They can be powerful hope-giving pointers toward a God who is with us, a God who cares for us, a God who gives comfort, a God who calls us away from fear and the panic it can create in us, and instead calls us toward hope and the steady, persistent, and even radical actions that hope can inspire in us.

So, this Advent season, my hope is that we, along with the poet, will be able encourage each other with a confidence born from the truth of these words:

...let evening come./Let it come, as it will, and don't/be afraid.

Feel free to leave a comment below or contact me directly at


Want to support The Ecological Disciple?

A year-end gift of any size to our parent organization—Circlewood—supports the current and future work of The Ecological Disciple.

Click here to support The Ecological Disciple!