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El Roi


Hide and Seek: Who didn’t have fun playing this game as a child? Who didn’t look forward to going to Grandma’s house with its nooks and crannies and great hiding spots? And which part did you want to play first: the hider or the seeker? Ah, all this wasn’t so long ago. And the thing is, it’s still a game we’re quite good at playing.

In some ways, it describes our life-long game with God. We’re good at hiding and He’s good at seeking. For me, it’s a daily game of holy search and rescue as I decide how much I want to know and be known and as I choose my measure of intimacy. Most men I know, myself included, have become experts at hiding. We’re veteran escape-artists. We find it easy to retreat to our man-caves and pretend not to hear the voices calling our name. “Huh?” and “I can’t hear you” roll off the tongue with ease and speed.

Remember the earliest day when God’s, “Adam, where are you,” rang through the Garden? (Interestingly, He calls for Adam but not Eve. His finger seems, throughout the Word, to be pointing to the man.) Yet it is also true that the omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient Creator of the Universe doesn’t ask questions looking for information.

The truth is He knows exactly where I am. He knows exactly who I am. He knows exactly how I am.

Can I suggest that the best news in all the world is this: He sees me, and He sees you. He is El Roi, the God who sees (Gen 16:13). I am not forgotten. I am not ignored. I am not misunderstood. I am not abandoned.

The prophet writes, “Have you not known, have you not heard, have you not been told? … It is He who sits above the circle of the Earth. … Lift up your eyes on high and see who has created all these. … who calls their host by number and knows them all by name. … Why do you say then my way is hidden from the Lord and my just cause is passed over by my God?” (Is 40:21-22, 26-27).

Let us remember today, fellow sojourner, that no matter our hiding, He is the One Who Never Stops Seeing and Seeking. That He is this One defines amazing grace and is good news of immeasurable love and immeasurable impact. As He alone sees a sparrow falling in the woods and He alone knows the number of hairs on our head, we can anchor ourselves, we can stop our endless doubting, we can rest and breathe shalom-deeply by His stream of living water.

Our Abba Daddy sees and knows and understands. In our world of chaos, darkness, despair, mystery, and questions, you and I, no matter our troubling circumstances, no matter our fickle feelings, and no matter our nagging anxieties, are never alone nor are we meant to be. Dear friends, whoever we are, however we are, wherever we are, He sees us.

- Chris

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