Did you ever play hide and seek when you were little? I was the worst at playing the game. I got too antsy in my hiding spots and always gave myself away. Playing as an adult, I became more stealth in my hiding stake-outs. I was much more of an expert at hiding.
I was playing with a load of kids recently, knowing I had the upper hand. I had the best spot in the house – the broom closet. I knew they would never remember it was there, plus I scored a seat on one of the shelves. Several minutes went by, and then a few more continued to drag along. The hallway was too quiet, so I peeked my head out to see if they were coming. No. They were playing tag in the living room. Apparently, they gave up their search and moved on without me. I thought I was winning the game, when really; I was the dork sitting in a dark closet by myself.
Relationships can be like the game of hide and seek. We want to be found, but we also want to hide our heart so it doesn’t get hurt. Growing up in the church I was always told to, “guard my heart.” I think it became a personal competition to see who could hide their heart the best. Some of us are so good at hiding we forgot we are supposed to be found.
I am the first person to admit that I have been a winner at hiding my heart, and I have lost more than a few opportunities because I didn’t let anyone find it. Before I knew it, pride over being successfully single and self-sufficient welled up and kept me from sharing my heart.
Even when we are technically the “winner” of hide & seek, it can really just reveal our fear of being found. And sometimes, maybe we aren’t hiding all of us, but just certain parts of ourselves. Those often happen to be the same areas that crave to be found and loved.
Many times, what we are hiding has more to do with shame than with the actual parts of ourselves we’re keeping hidden from view. The good news is that scripture promises us over and over again that, “those who trust in the Lord will not be put to shame.” (Psalm 25:3)
It can feel overwhelming to address our hiding spots, but it’s always for the best. Not only were my hiding spots ruined when truth invaded, but the need to hide vanished as well.
“We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment that he has already thrown open His door to us. We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise.” (Rom 5:1-2 MSG)
The truth is, there is something so magical and deeply profound about being found, and knowing someone is searching for us in the meantime. I’ve learned it starts with being real with God. He’s man enough to take it, and God enough to help you overcome anything - including your hiding places.
Jessica currently resides in Orange County, CA, where she is on the Propel creative team. She’s enjoyed life's adventures and has traveled extensively, is an avid art enthusiast, and cares deeply about french fries and coconut milk ice cream. To see more snippets of her world, follow Jessica on Instagram.