I stood in my kitchen, washing dishes and watching Abigail play in her exersaucer. I thought to myself, Wow, I have vaccumed and cleaned the kitchen and haven’t heard anything in the last 15 minutes from Grace or Chesed. My Mommy radar went into high gear as I knew they must be getting into some sort of trouble since I let them start playing in the basement. Sure enough, as I walked down the stairs calling their names, I heard muffled voices of surprise and “shh..she’s coming!” type of dialogue going on.
I walked down the stairs to witness a hilarious scene: Grace and Kes were in the back corner of the basement, crouched down and hiding behind the couch, eating strawberry jello with their hands from a huge bowl. It was hard not to laugh when I saw the jello plastered all over Chesed’s face, but I also knew I had to discipline them, which I then did.
After I sent them to time out (in separate areas) to “think about why that wasn’t a good idea,” I asked Grace why she didn’t just come to me first and ask for some jello. She said, “I knew that you would be mad and say no.” I said, “honey, I wouldn’t be mad if you asked me first. I’m only upset because you didn’t ask me and you know you are supposed to ask me first before you get any food from the fridge. I would have actually given you some with your lunch.”
I saw something of myself, of Adam and Eve, of every human being who has ever lived on this earth in the eyes of my children today. Guilt. Shame. Remorse for being “caught in the act” of hidden sin and disobedience. And conviction of my own attitude towards God at times in Grace’s response to me, “I thought you would say no and be mad (so I hid instead).”
Hmmm…reminds me a little of the Parable of the Minas and the servant who hid his treasure in the ground instead of investing it because “I knew you as a hard man…and I was afraid…so I hid (what you gave me)” (Matthew 25:14-30). That servant didn’t know his master very well, did he? He had a wrong idea of who he was and how he would respond to him, so instead of obeying him and investing his treasure, he hid it out of fear and was punished as a result. But he would have been rewarded like the other two servants had he simply known His master and obeyed him.
Psalm 81 tells a similar story. God seeking Israel’s best, calling them to hear His voice and walk in His ways, but they refused. They rebelled. They did what they wanted to their own detriment. Why? They didn’t trust in God or in His goodness towards them, even though He had demonstrated it time and time again. The Psalmist says, “He would have fed them also with the finest of wheat; and with honey from the rock I would have satisfied you” (verse 16).
Are you hiding anything from your Heavenly Father, friend? Do you fear coming to Him because you know Him to be “a hard man”? Do you think that He will turn you away? Reject you or fail to give you something you want or deeply desire? Or are you ashamed because of a hidden sin?
The Bible has good news for all of us!
As for our sins:
“If we confess our sins, He will be faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9
“He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.” – Proverbs 28:13
As for our desires and wishes:
“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” – Romans 8:32
Perhaps the next time Grace is tempted to take some treat without asking, she will remember that I told her it could likely be hers (without shame, time outs, or remorse) if she would just ask me first and allow me to give it to her when I felt was best.
Perhaps the next time I am tempted to do things my way to get what I want instead of first asking God if it is good for me, I will think about this as well. If it is good for me and glorifying to Him, He will hold nothing back. He’s a gracious Daddy. He wants to give me what is best. If it will be harmful to me, He will withhold it for good reason.
I was reminded today of the joy that is ours when we come out of hiding and come clean with our Maker. When we acknowledge our sins to Him, He gives us what we least deserve – mercy and forgiveness and a clear path to restoration. He is a loving Father who can handle the honest confessions we bring to Him – and it is only then that we can be healed and He can deliver us from our “golden idols” and lead us to our Promised Land.
Mercy is waiting for us if we just take one step of faith and come out of hiding.