We like to play hide and seek at our house. One of my boys is so filled with the anticipation of being found that he giggles a little too much. It’s pretty easy, but still great fun finding him because it usually involves lots of snuggling! My other child is scary. He finds a hiding place, doesn’t make a move, utters not a sound…I’m not sure he even breathes. It’s nuts. We’ve lived in the same house for 9 years now and really there are only so many available hiding places. But I have searched for this child until I get that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach thinking…Oh my goodness...surely he did not go outside. At that point the gig is up! “Honey you are such a good hider, but mommy can’t find you, I give up”.…silence….”I’m sorry but the game is over please come out right now”….more silence. “If you don’t come out this instant you are going to have discipline!” UGH!
In our house the advantage goes to the kids – they can squeeze into places I wouldn’t even consider, but I think that truthfully, we grown ups are pretty good at hiding. Really, we come from a long line of hiders. Look back in Genesis. Adam and Eve said “we saw our nakedness and we hid ourselves”. There you go, it all started way back in the garden. We feel exposed, we see our vulnerability, we fear consequences, we think “I’ve never felt like this before” and so we hide. I have to tell you, I am quite an expert at this. When it comes to conflict – my preferred response is stuff and hide. So with that whole fight or flight mechanism…uh…I’m gonna go with FLIGHT.
We all choose to hide at times, is it really that bad? If I am really honest with myself then what kind of shelter, refuge, strong tower, am I? If I must hide then I need a better hiding place. I love Psalm 32:7 “You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.” In that verse I see not only the shelter I need, but I also find hope in those songs of deliverance. I don’t think God intends for us to live our lives in hiding and ultimately there is freedom. I think that's found in verse 10, in trusting. God is trustworthy. He has proven this in His extravagant love! I know it sounds simple – Just trust God, Baby. Yeah right. Believe me, its hard work. Prov 3 says "Trust in the Lord with all your heart." Notice the author does not appeal to our logical rational choice – no, he appeals to the heart. It is only with our heart that we are able to trust. Our brains just don’t go there! We have a battle on our hands.
So now I’m wondering if maybe this flight mechanism is really OK, if instead of running away from whatever I fear - I run toward my God. No longer hiding from....but hiding in! In that hiding place we know God’s protection , and his great love for us. It’s there we find the faith to trust him AND the courage to venture out.