George Bowers Sr.: God’s night vision goggles

George Bowers Sr.

While the dog is man’s best friend, the cat may fill that role for his wife. Although it is certainly not my preference, many women enjoy the companionship of these furry felines. As my wife reminds me, even cats can reveal something to us of the great creator who made them and who continues to oversee both them and us.

Most folks are aware that cats have an incredible ability to see in the dark. This is due to a reflective layer of cells behind their retinas that returns the incoming light back into their eyeballs. This amplifies and brightens the images the cat’s eyes perceive and enables them to resolve in surroundings up to seven times darker than what humans can see in. This ability greatly enhances the success of their nighttime excursions when they go on the prowl for fun and fowl.

Humans eventually replicated this amazing characteristic in the 1930s when scientists first developed night vision goggles for soldiers. These aids to visual acuity have protected and continue to protect many troops in combat during nighttime operations. Although current models are still large and bulky, the advantages they provide continue to be significant. It’s no coincidence, however, that God thought of this first and that we copied it later. It’s also important to note that his version is still much simpler and more efficient than our clumsy imitations.

God himself has night vision capabilities and I’m so thankful he does. David describes in Psalms 139:11-12 how even the darkness is not dark to God. In fact, David goes on to declare that the night shines like the day to his heavenly father and that darkness is as light to him. This is a great comfort for those who rest in his loving protection, for not only can he spot hazards where we cannot, He’s also able to detect potential threats and protect us from them. During the frequent black bear sightings this summer and in a valley where an occasional snake appearance is not unheard of, I’m thankful for a God who can see all, regardless of the light level.

Although this attribute of the almighty is true physically, it is even more of a blessing spiritually. Many times we go through very dark periods in life when we not only can’t see potential threats, but we can’t even see the pathways beneath our feet. During these times, it is especially comforting to know that we have a God to whom even the night becomes light. As such, he can continue to direct our steps and see us safely through as we follow him in obedient faith.

As you see your kitty cat prowling through your dark house with confident vision, may she remind you of her, and your, great creator who keeps watch over you both even in the darkest of nights. Invite God to enlighten your path today and to grant you the grace to faithfully follow Him even when your way is dark. Trusting his vision, George

George Bowers Sr. is the senior pastor of Antioch Church of the Brethren in Woodstock and the author of seven books, including his devotional collection, “Blessings.” He can be reached through or at