Originally published Friday, 15 May 2015.
In the past, it's been easy for me to want to hide.
To say little white lie not to be punished.
To run to my room to avoid wrath.
To cover my head to stop feeling shame.
To not feel so as to not have to deal.
To cast blame on another so it's not on me.
To compare so as to hide my faults.
To fight back to protect my vulnerable areas.
To judge to highlight faults.
To avoid prayer when I am deep in sin.
To push the love of God out the door when I feel bad.
To feel he God doesn't like me when I fail.
I've played this game of hide-and-go-seek my entire life. Deep and dark hiding places were intimate spots of coverage. They kept the stampede of critiques, condemning words and criticisms far.
Yet, as alluring as this game appeared - there was one thing I always found true - it's a flat-out a losing game. The seeker finds the hider. And when they do, the hider comes out exposed, vulnerable and embarrassed.
Isn't this really just a game of shame
hidden under the disappearing cloak of safety?
We think we are hiding our worst parts, but we never really are.
What we cover for a moment, but are left vulnerable for a lifetime.
We want to go unseen, until we realize we are unseen even from ourselves.
We distance ourselves from the light of God, only to realize we have become acquainted with darkness.
We hide - obstructing us from the love of others.
We are alone.
The crazy part about this game is - as much as we think we hide, we are - and always have been - seen.
The Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”
He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” Gen. 3:9-11
God may call out to us, "Where are you?" but please rest assured - he knows where we are.
How do we answer him? Do we admit our ineffective strategies? Our location? Our true heart? God's power is best seen in the light and our transformation best occurs with God in sight.
What is he calling you to reveal?
He will take care of you. You see, God understands our need to hide - and, interestingly, he is not against this strategy, he's just against doing it the wrong way.
He wants us to have cover, protection, a safe home, a guarded spirit.
Here is how the Word instructs us to hide:
You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble; You surround me with songs of deliverance. Ps. 32:7
Keep me as the apple of the eye; Hide me in the shadow of Your wings. Ps. 72:8
For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; In the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock. Ps. 27:5
Under God, we hide.
Then, we don't sit cowered in fear, but empowered with his bravery.
We step into the world with courage, rather than retreating discouraged.
We live true to who he made us to be, rather than trying to flee.
God is love. He sees us for who we are and he accepts us. If he didn't want us, we would have already let us go. But, he didn't. He sent his one and only son to pave a way to bravery for us.
There is bravery found in hiding. This bravery is found by retreating into the deep, sacred and loving hiding places of God. Only then, do we become brave.