Hiding Out

Did you ever play hide and seek?  I remember long summer nights where all the young people on our block would play that game for hours together until it was so dark we could barely see.  We never played in one specific yard but for quite a distance down our street.  It was always fun to see if I could find the perfect hiding spot where I could sit with great delight and watch the others valiantly try to find me.

Nowadays we often find ourselves hiding out for a different reason.  The news reports are full of negative Covid stories:  a celebrity gets Covid after his own birthday party where people weren’t wearing masks; people on various commercial flights are returning home with Covid; and there is even a documented case of someone contracting Covid a second time.

All of that wants to make me curl up at home and never want to go out anywhere; but it is impossible to truly hide from this virus.  We need groceries.  We need medical attention.  We need vehicle fuel.  Many of us need to go out for our place of employment.

Sometimes we can feel like we want to hide out from God as well.  I think we forget God’s omniscient qualities and hope that He won’t see us when we are misbehaving.  We hope He won’t notice when we say something hurtful or when we sneak that extra snack we shouldn’t.

Scripture tells us in Psalm 139 that we can’t hide from God:

“Where can I go from Your Spirit?  Where can I flee from Your Presence?  If I go up to the heavens, You are there; if I make my bed in the depths, You are there.  If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there Your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.” (verses 7-10 NIV)

The fact of the matter is that God is always there.  He knows every little bit about us.  He knows what we need even before we need it.  There is no place we can go where He cannot see us and what we are doing.  There is no finding the perfect hiding spot from Him.  

There are many sad stories where homes have been on fire and children have hid in the hopes of protecting themselves rather than trying to escape.  This puts them in grave danger instead as it becomes more difficult for fire crews to rescue them.  

While we might want to be like those children and hide out from all the world’s troubles or from God’s perceived condemnation, we should not be wanting to hide ourselves from God.  We need Him now more than ever.  He is the only One who can rescue us from whatever is causing us distress.  

While our initial reaction, in times of trouble, tends to be to hide and protect ourselves, the challenge is to open ourselves up instead and then we can receive the healing restorative ministrations of our loving God.  

I know many of you are stressed.  Maybe your work situation puts you into more people contact than you would like during these pandemic times.  Maybe your health conditions or age put you more at risk for complications should you contract this virus.  Perhaps you are concerned about how to educate your children and whether school is a safe place for them to be.  It is really easy to shut down and withdraw rather than deal with it all.

It is my hope and prayer that you won’t do that.  Not only do you need to open yourself up to the realization of God’s ever-present love and care, you are needed to help others in your life.  Hiding out helps no one.  Reach out to those in your life who need the reminder of God’s care for them.  Live a life of faith, trusting that God knows what is going on in every corner of the world.  He is there to support you, nourish you, sustain you.  

It’s like playing peek-a-boo with babies.  When their eyes are covered they think that they are hidden because they cannot see us.  Yet the loving adult is still there watching over them.

You can play peek-a-boo with God or you can grow in the faith and know that no matter how much you cover up, He will still be looking over you.  Our gracious God knows your cares.  Entrust them to Him today.

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