Saturday, April 11, 2009


"And the LORD replied, 'He is hiding among the baggage.'" 1 Samuel 10: 22

When Saul was chosen as King, he was nowhere to be found. He was hiding.

How long since you've played, "Hide and Seek"? Your initial response might be 30 years or more. A neighbourhood game often used to start in the early evening during the summer months of my childhood. Little voices whispering. Feet scampering to find the perfect hiding place. Barely breathing, wanting to go undetected. Then, the squeals at being found.

Grown-ups don't play hide and seek. At least, not for fun.

Were you good at hiding? Could you be easily found or did others finally give up the search?

How are you doing at hiding now? What 'baggage' have you surrounded yourself with to create a barricade of protection? We bear suffering in silence because we want to spare others the pain. We think we're being brave. But we hide too well.

Baggage comes in a variety of shapes, colours and sizes. Shame. Fear. Insecurity. Pride. Appearances. People pleasing. Words.

If only we'd realize that getting found keeps you in the game. Robert Fulghum, in his book, "Everything I needed to know I learned in Kindergarten", speaks of the adult version of this childhood game. "Wanting to hide. Needing to be sought. Confused about being found. 'I don't want anyone to know' 'What will people think?' 'I don't want to bother anyone.'"

Nobody truly wants to be left alone. Regardless of what their actions are saying, deep down they want to be found - but maybe they're afraid that no-one will care enough to keep looking. The ache and lonliness of never being found.

Where and what are you hiding today? The Lord is calling, "olly-olly-oxen-free, come out, come out wherever you are." Hiding takes so much energy. It takes work and effort to keep from being found. Some of us are working pretty hard at something that is hardly working. God's Word says that He came to SEEK and to save the lost, Luke 19:10. He's all about finding. A lost sheep. A lost coin. A prodigal daughter.

We cannot hide from God. We might be experts at concealing truth from others, but Hebrews 4:13 says, "Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account."

Will you do me a favour today? If you're hidding among the baggage like Saul, will you ask the Lord for courage to be found? I'm not saying it's easy. Maybe years have stolen so much of life that hiding has become all you know and the fear of exposure is so great. "But, the day came, when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to Blossom" (Anais Nin). The heart can no longer be held captive by the mind. Hiding no longer is an option. The pain of remaining closed is greater. In spite of all that could potentially happen, you see and are seen and you become infinitely more alive and beautiful.

Anais Nin also wrote, "A persons life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage." I don't know about you, but usually one makes themselves very small in the process of hiding. It's time to live BIG.

Today's the beginning of a new game. So, to all of you who have hid too well, get found. Olly-olly-oxen-free!

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Marilyn in Mississippi said...

I'm so prone to hiding! Withdrawing! Isolating myself! I have felt God's nudging the last few weeks to STOP IT! To come out from hiding. Thanks for the encouragement!

Hope things are better with your Dad.


Laura said...

Olly-olly oxen free!

I've tried that hiding thing many times (and will probably fall back into it many more before glory).

He always finds me.

Happy Easter, Joy. I"m praying for your family--for peace, continued breakthroughs for your dad, and some sweet memories.

Debra said...

God is working through you and speaking directly to me. I have been hiding this week, due to the hard week of my FIL. Been waiting on God and hiding from everyone around me. You were in my prayers this morning and your family for the decisions you have to make with your dad.
Have a wonderful Easter.
Debra Z.
No. CA.
I sent you a email on your yahoo acct.