As a child I loved playing hide-n-seek. Most of all I loved hiding. On our farm we had tons of good places to hide – in trees, behind buildings, in machinery, in ditches, etc. Hiding wasn’t that hard, but getting to the base – a large propane tank that sat out in an open area – without having the seeker see you was challenging.
I’ve noticed that I try to hide many things in real life too – hiding my ignorance on a subject, hiding my weaknesses, or hiding my failures. I try to hide these from others, thinking that if they knew the real me, they’d despise me to some degree.
There have been times in my life when I’ve played hide-n-seek with God too. I’ve held Him at arms length. I’ve avoided involving Him in my decisions and plans. I’ve sometimes put up a front to Him rather than being up-front with Him. It’s silly and hurtful. He is God. He knows me intimately, better than I know myself. He knows what’s best for me. He cares about me more than any other human being. So why would I play hide-n-seek with Him?
Interestingly, hide-n-seek is the oldest game there is. Immediately after they sinned, Adam and Eve played the game with God. And since then, every human plays it, me included, because in many ways we all enjoy ruling our own lives, being our own god.
I am so thankful that God is a faithful seeker. He hates being separated from me, so He pursues me time and again. He came to this earth in the person of Jesus Christ to show how much He longs for fellowship with me. And He showed the depth of that longing when He died for all my sin – paying for everything that separates me from Him. As the author of life itself, He rose from the dead, confirming His victory over death and assuring me that, as His child, I too will have that same victory over my death.
I’m still hiding spiritually, but it’s not hiding from God anymore – instead it’s hiding with Him. The Bible says of those who trust in Jesus, “Your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3). Like hiding behind an impenetrable shield, all that Jesus did for me and all that belongs to Him is mine as a gift. I’m hidden from the devil’s accusations. I’m hidden from our holy God’s just wrath against sin. And my soul – the inner true me – is hidden from the effects of death and the grave. I have this promise from God: “When Christ who is your life appears [at the end of time], then you also will appear with Him in glory” (Colossians 3:4).
I still enjoy playing hide-n-seek here on earth, especially the hiding part. But in relation to God, being found and hidden in Him brings incomparable joy, peace, and eternal security. And His hiding place is big enough for everyone!
Tim Onnen, Heart-Song Leader