Summary: There are times in our relationship with GOD that it seems that He conceals Himself from us. What, if anything, is GOD doing when He plays "Hide & Seek" ?
When god plays Hide And Seek
8 Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: 9 On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: 10 But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.
A. Children have a most unique way of entertaining themselves
1. In spite of all the toys and technology available to them, they still find pleasure in simple games:
b. “Simon says”
c. “Red Light, Green Light”.
d. But perhaps no other game is as well-known among children of every generation as the game we call “Hide and Seek”.
i. Even an infant will giggle with delight when playing “peek-a-boo”.
B. But when GOD tries to play “Hide & Seek” however, it seems to lose all the fun!
1. The reason is simple:
a. He’s a good “Hider”!
A. Job was a man who faithfully served GOD.
1. Job 1:1,5 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil. 5 And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.
2. God’s “Hide & Seek” was NOT a punishment!
a. The devil would have you to believe that GOD hides from you because He’s either mad at, or ashamed of, you.
3. God’s hiding was simply the result of a challenge from Satan.
a. God’s answer to Satan’s challenge began the game of “Hide & Seek” from Job.
b. But you see, God’s confidence in His servant said, “I may hide, but Job will never give up seeking!”
4. It may seem to you that God is playing “Hide & Seek” from you, but don’t let the devil convince you that God is mad at you for something you’ve done, or that He’s embarrassed by your actions.
a. You’ve heard me say this before, but allow me to repeat:
i. “Nothing I can do will make God love me any more, and nothing I do will make God love me any less.”
b. It is absolutely imperative that we understand that God’s Love is perfect and unconditional.
III. Where to look?
A. Nothing can be more frustrating than looking hopelessly for that missing item.
1. You KNOW you put it there, but “someone” must have come along and moved it!
a. The older I get, the more I find that people move things from where I put them!
B. “Behold I go forward…”
1. The first place to look is in the most logical place to find Him: forward.
a. We start praying more
b. We start fasting
c. We start reading our Bible more
d. We move FORWARD in our attempt to draw near to God.
2. “…but He is not there.”
a. Did you realize that this is the ONLY direction that Job flatly stated “He is NOT” ?
i. Study it out---in the other three directions, Job says “I can’t find Him.”
a. Backward – “I cannot perceive Him”
b. On the left – “I cannot behold Him”
c. On the right – “I cannot see Him”
ii. But Job realized that if God is anywhere to be found, He’s not out there leaving me behind!
b. What are you saying, pastor? Simply this:
i. You may have tried everything within your human power to find God, to draw close to God, to make connections with God, all to seem hopeless.
ii. The reason is simply because “He is not there”!
a. My God is a God of invitations; He’s not a God that runs away and leaves me falling behind because I can’t keep up!
C. “…and backward, but I cannot perceive Him.”
1. You’ll never find Him going in this direction.
a. To the Jew, this meant facing the West, as “forward” always signified toward the Eastern sky.
b. You can look for Him in the sunrise as well as in the sunset, but He’s still playing “Hide & Seek”.
D. “On the left hand, where He doth work…”
1. Job looks again in a direction where He has known God to “work” in the past.
a. How many times have I returned to the place, whether a physical location, or someplace in my spirit, where I knew that God had visited me in the past…only to discover that He’s not there.