I was walking down the beach one day with paralyzed ministry dog Miss Mercy in her wheelchair feeling terribly sad regarding several things when it dawned on me not for the first time in recent days that I felt I couldn’t “look upward” where the Lord God almighty sits in heaven. The Lord had revealed to me a day or so earlier part of the reason, but now He revealed more.
I was “hiding” from God and keeping a distance from Him despite my usual daily prayer, Bible reading, and praising Him because I was ashamed of my tears, my sorrow, my grief, and the degree of my struggle with a number of tough things I faced. I needed more than anything to “look upward” to the Lord and to run into His shelter and receive His love, comfort, care, compassion, mercy, wisdom, fellowship, etc. But in my heart I was looking downward. I was even having difficulty physically looking upward. I was downcast.
Why the “hiding”? Why the shame? I grew up in a family that didn’t believe in the Lord and believed tears, sorrow, grief, mourning, struggle, etc. were to be hidden behind closed doors from the world and from one another and not addressed with compassion, comfort, and care but with hiding and a “stiff upper lip.” I failed as a child to hide my emotions and was judged for this. I love my family dearly and don’t believe they did this purposefully to be hurtful but that they did so as a result of their own upbringings, personal challenges, and, most of all, lack of faith in the Lord. Nevertheless, to this day, it’s hard for me to come out of “hiding” with my tears and such – even with the Lord.
The Lord reminded me that day that He in His amazing love for His children wants us not to “hide” our hearts, tears, sorrows, and struggles from Him by trying to deal with them all by our lonesome if we are able to deal with them at all, but to come to Him as our “hiding place” and to receive His amazing tender loving kindness, care, healing, compassion, wisdom, fellowship, hope, joy, peace, restoration, etc.
“Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance…” Psalms 32:7
When you hurt, friend, when you struggle, when the tears come, when you grieve, when you can’t see past your sorrow, when you are weighed down by burdens, when your heart feels like it will burst with emotions, come into the “hiding place”, come into the safe shelter, come into the refuge, come into the powerful, loving, holy, almighty presence of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Pour your heart out to Him, cry out to Him, seek Him, cry before Him, open your heart, open your ears, open your eyes, open your arms, and rest in His shelter as He loves you with His unfathomable love. Draw close and closer to Him. Look upward. To the Lord! Come, come, come into His presence, oh yes! May He be your “hiding place.” Be safe in Him.
Father, please God take my heart and take my tears and mend me. Oh, how I need you! Oh, how we all need you! Comfort your children, dear Father! Let us be trusting children who come running into your “hiding place”. And shelter us, dear Father, as in your healing hands you mend us. Oh, mend us oh Lord! All of us who hurt, oh mend us God! Dear Father! Draw us to you. Shelter us! Restore us! Take our burdens from us! Replace them with your yoke! Be tender with us, dear Father! Some of us are so fragile! So raw! I know I am. Oh Lord, all those who are hurting, draw them to yourself! Oh, God! I need you like never before! We need you! Help us to be humble and confess to you our need for you! Let us come running into your hiding place, oh Lord! Heal your people, oh Father! Thank you Lord, oh thank you! Thank you Lord! Amen!
Please note in the following verse how the psalmist recognizes the Lord as his “hiding place” and puts his hope in God’s Word. Jesus who is Lord is also called the Word. And the Bible is called God’s Word. No matter our tears and sorrow, our burdens and struggles, our hope is to be in Jesus the Christ and in the Bible. I encourage you with all my heart to read the Bible daily and to live by it including to find peace, hope, love, joy, wisdom, and comfort and encouragement in it.
Rest, friend, rest in Jesus. Rest and find love and healing in the “hiding place” that is the Lord Jesus Christ!
“Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.” Psalms 119:114