Hide and Seek

Growing up you probably played the game hide and seek. I think it may be one of the first games I played with my daughter.

There is something magical for a child to know they are sought after. My daughter could never stay hidden long enough for me to find her…she would pop out and say, “here I am mommy!”

Playing hide and seek as a kid was fun. There was excitement and anticipation in hiding as well as in being found.

As we grew up this game became more sophisticated. We got better at hiding. We learned to conceal our emotions. We could stay in our hiding places longer and we learned not to “out” ourselves.

Many of us have learned to hide our pain, failure, insecurities and our sin, leaving us living as emotional fugitives.

The problem is many of us have been playing the game for so long, we forgot who we are and that we are hiding.

When we live in fear of being known, we miss out on real, authentic community and relationship. The fear of rejection and exposure threatens us and pushes us back into our hiding place.

I know a little bit about the game of hide and seek. I have a varsity letter in it!

I grew up in a dysfunctional home. My parents divorced when I was young and my father was an abusive alcoholic. When I was in high school, I was so afraid of my friends discovering what my life was really like, that I never invited anyone over. Ever.

This was just the beginning of my hiding. Over the years I became highly successful at hiding (or so I thought). Outwardly I was an easygoing, carefree girl. On the inside I was a hot, angry mess. I was desperate to be known but ashamed of who I was and who I was not, and so I hid.

I hid because I was afraid people would reject me if they knew the “real me”. I assumed that I was the only one who struggled with feeling angry and so let shame force me into emotional seclusion and isolation.

Eventually my ability to hide became a problem. I was in full time ministry and my unresolved issues were impairing my ability to make deep, lasting relationships. Something had to give. I had to “out myself” from the game.

Over time, I slowly began to trust the Lord and the people He had placed in my life. It has been a long process of self-discovery, forgiveness, trust and awareness.

Adam and Eve hid from God in the Garden of Eden, because they sinned and they were ashamed. Hiding comes naturally to us as a result of the fall. How we choose to respond to Gods voice when He calls to us is our choice.

God’s heart toward us is good, kind and loving. He calls us out of our hiding places, not to humiliate us or shame us. He calls us out so He can redeem and restore our hurts, our habits and our sinfulness.

God designed us to live in fellowship and freedom with Him and with others.

The Lord is seeking you friend, the question is, do you want to be found?

Grace & Peace ~ Karen

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12 thoughts on “Hide and Seek

    • KAREN COOK says:

      Dear Turtle girl….thanks for being brave enough to stick your neck out. God sees you, knows you, loves you. I pray you find courage to continue to come “out of your shell”. Thanks for stopping by today.

  1. Sherry says:

    Zing! This spoke to…me –>”I was afraid people would reject me if they knew the ‘real me’ “.
    I’ve come to treasure and see the gift in the handful of people that I totally do not hide around. It’s pure comfort to let it all hang out.
    But the greatest gift has been that the more comfort I get with being “all of me” in their company, the braver I get to be “all of me” in all the places of my ENTIRE life. It’s given me courage to live authentically – just how God thought me up. And ya know what?…Authenticity rocks off my socks!

  2. Not4saken1 says:

    Love
    and Life…they go together, without one we cannot have the other one. A
    Life without Love is like living in an empty dark room, no light, no
    happiness, no energy, no nothing. When We find ourselves loving each
    other, loving ourselves and loving Life, everything around Us is full of
    Harmony, Magic and Happiness ♥
     
    I posted the above quote today. I love people all the time but I seem almost invisible. I used to be sought out when I had money but I have none now. I was hurt in an accident but I still can do things, if only anyone would ask. I seek the Lord daily, hourly often times. I rented my house out to my sisters ex and live with her and her new husband. They hardly notice me, and neither do their kids. Sometimes I wonder if I am still alive.

    • KAREN COOK says:

      Thank you for your vulnerability here. Know that you are not invisible (although the people in your life may take you for granted). You have a beautiful heart and your longing to know God and live in fellowship is evident by your eloquent words. I pray that as you seek to be known by others, that you also experience being known intimately by the Lord God who created you in His image and for His glory. Thank you for risking here. I hope you will stop by the couch again and spend some time…grace & peace to you friend.

  3. Cindy Holman says:

    Wow.  Good stuff here.  Yes – I have often played “hide and seek” with God – and especially with others who don’t know that I’m hiding.  I’m getting better at being my own true genuine self – with God and with others – but it’s a life-time of unlearning past defensive behavior.

    • KAREN COOK says:

      Cindy – It is definitely easier to hide from people than God. I love how you described hiding as learned defensive behavior….that is so true! Thanks my friend…appreciate you and your willingness to share here!

    • KAREN COOK says:

      Thank you friend. Know that God is close to you in this time and that you are in my prayers and close to my heart. Praying for you this weekend – may the God of all comfort meet you in the midst of your pain and grief. Much love to you.

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