I was afraid. So I hid. Gen. 3:10
Back in Eden people started hiding. The funny thing is most of us still are. We are hiding from secrets, from sin, from our heart, our spouse and, like them, even from God.
In our hiding place there is no peace.
When I kept silent about my sin my body wasted away. Ps. 32:3
In our hiding place there is no healing.
People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy. Prov. 28:13
In our hiding place there is separation from God.
When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the Lord God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the Lord God among the trees. Then the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”
He replied, “I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. Gen. 3:8-10
One of the provisions that God made for us to come out of hiding is within the safety of his church. The church is where we confess, restore and bear.
- confess your sins to one another- Jam. 5:16
- restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness – Gal. 1:1
- bear one another’s burdens- Gal. 6:2
But what if there’s no confessing and no bearing? What if there is still a lot of hiding going on?
You go first
Teach others through your example. Let them see the beauty in God’s design for his church. You start confessing. You start bearing.
“Refusing to be vulnerable is dishonest and hypocritical.” – Rick Warren
Make it about God.
The real power in sharing our testimonies with each other is we can get a glimpse of just how much God is doing. Tonight a brother in our assembly shared with us where he was 10 years ago which was facing prison because his actions took life. He stood before us tonight, a free man, physically and spiritually. He now works as a substance abuse counselor, is married to a godly woman, has a beautiful baby, is a contributing member of a church and just bought his first house.
And he knows God did it.
“Return to your home, and declare how much God has done for you.” And he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for him.” Luke 8:39
Don’t be shocked
“Oh my gosh! I never would have guessed that about YOU!”
When others start confessing don’t say that with words or with the look on your face. I have heard the confession of closet food addicts and bulimics. I’ve heard the cries of a husband who hits his wife and a mother who hits her children. I’ve seen the pain in the eyes of a spouse who has committed adultery and the regret of a relapsed addict. And I just listen.
Camaraderie isn’t just for the military or street gangs. God’s family should set the bar. We should be example of intentional loyalty and fidelity. It should be known of us that we always have each other’s back.
All of this leads us to the most important place- intimacy with Jesus. Instead of hiding from him, let’s hide in him. In that sweet communion you will find rest.
You are my hiding place. Ps. 32:7