God has this wonderful way of revealing to me what I need before I even know I need it. For instance, this study…this very topic of being hidden, He has been working on my heart for a while about taking a step away from some things, meaning I would be hidden by the world’s standards and spending more time with Him…always more time with Him. And this book! I knew I wanted to do another online study because it makes me grow but I hadn’t considered this one…after I read the first chapter, many months ago, I stopped and had so many things I wanted to write down for myself and then my book laid there without me picking it up until recently. And then I knew, here’s where God wanted to do a work in my heart…more of Him, less of me…hidden in Him, unseen by anyone else.
Let me bare my soul here…I am a people pleaser, it is difficult for me to overcome. Page 19 in Chapter 1, Sara says “I’d been driven by a passion to see lives change, but I also craved the validation I received when my life made a notable impact on someone else’s”. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love the ministry I have been called to and know this is where God wants me but it’s the add on things to be noticed, admired, etc that are my sin and need to be removed. The motives behind why I say yes to certain things needs to be laid at the foot of the cross and not picked back up. Page 28, “To hide in Him rather than perform for Him, to shift my attention from branches to roots, from my visible work for God to my unseen life in God”. I am and have been thirsty for more of God, my roots need nourished by Him and I can’t expect that to happen if I’m constantly working to please God instead of BE with Him.
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 91:1
One of these revelations of hiddenness came to me at Nehemiah Fest last September. On stage singing, in my heart knowing that I am not a performer, I am a worshiper and I need to remove some of this (performing) out of my life. And as I tend to chastise myself over my missteps, God has given me a great gift in reminding me that His grace is for me too. Thank You, Lord! Page 33 “God doesn’t banish us to this hidden place. He invites us. And finding God in the secret can teach a heart to sing.”
I love the story of Mary of Bethany, pouring the oil on Jesus’ head. A beautiful waste. She didn’t care what people thought, the snide remarks, the rebukes…she recklessly showed her love for her Savior. As we continue this study, let’s continually ask ourselves the question on Page 35: When no one else applauds you, when life is hard and makes no sense or simply feels like drudgery in the still quiet, will you hide yourself in Me? Will you waste your love on Me, here?
*Italics – Unseen by Sara Hagerty