I wanted to tag onto my post from last week with a couple more thoughts:) Enjoy!
The reaction is always to hide.
Hide from the shame.
Hide out of fear.
Hide in denial.
Hide from the truth.
Hide out of protection for self.
Someone else thought so too. In the Garden.
And their hiding was initially provoked by fear.
Fear that God was keeping something from them, something good. That God didn’t want their best. That His Word wasn’t true. That He was playing some cruel joke on them. That there was really something better out there, and they needed to discover what that was.
On their own.
“But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.” Genesis 3:4-7.
The servant did it too. Hid. With his talent, his gift. Perhaps out of fear.
“But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master’s money.“ Matthew 25:18
We’ve been hiding out of fear since the beginning of time.
And it manifests itself in the most unlikely ways.
I’ve been torn apart, turned inside out, taught, refined, loved, humbled, seen and experienced abundant grace.
I’ve been brought to my knees and seen the face of my Savior.
It’s a gift.
And it has been beautiful. And I would do it all over in a heartbeat if it meant learning what I’ve learned.
But isn’t it strange.
So often I want to hide it. That gift, those lessons, that pain that produced beauty. Pretend everything has always been ok. Like I haven’t struggled, don’t have a grace-story.
The Enemy likes to whisper that it’s a hindrance, that gift. That I should be ashamed. Ashamed of that pain, of that grace-filled work.
That I should care what others think. So I’m tempted to hide. Out of fear. What if they think I’m a mess? What if they think poorly of me? What if they have pity on me? I don’t want that.
Discouragement. He’s good at it. Fear of man trap. He’s good at that too.
That man’s opinion is more important than God’s. That any little criticism or hurt should derail my Kingdom work.
Can you relate?
That couldn’t be more opposite from the truth.
There’s a purpose. A specific, divine reason for this gift. It was no accident He chose me to experience the gift of that trial. That He chose to gift you with that specific gift, with that trial.
And it’s my honor to be entrusted with this gift.
To invest it. To use it. To till it, work it, and return it for the work of the kingdom.
And it is my joy.
But. The road to this…well it’s tough. This. Learning to fear God more than man. To care more about Him than I do about them. To worship Him, not them. To seek Him first, not them.
To offer my gifts to Him, not them.
But it is essential. If we are ever to be moved, to be uncomfortable. If our work is ever to accomplish anything for the Kingdom. If we will bury our gifts or invest our gifts.
He alone must be the object of our worship.
We must fear Him alone.
Yes, if fear is the problem, then fear, in fact, is the answer.
And then I found this. And I cannot think of a more appropriate way to phrase the blessings that flow from fearing God alone, of serving, sacrificing, offering those gifts with one goal in mind, and one goal only:
“I serve an Audience of One. Therefore, I can say to the world, ‘Before you I have nothing to prove, nothing to gain, nothing to lose.'” -Elyse Fitzpatrick
Yes, this. This is it. Living before an Audience of One. The only way to wholly offer our lives, our gifts, on the altar of praise, for the glory of Jesus Christ.
What gifts have you been entrusted with? Are you hiding out of fear? Perhaps God is urging you forward, asking you to make the most of the gift you’ve been entrusted with. How can you partner alongside Him in His work?
Thank you for reading!