HIDE AND SEEK….you are my hiding place. Psalm 32:7
People watching has always been fascinating for me. I was sitting watching symphony goers passing me on their way into the performance when I noticed a handsome young couple approaching. They were tall and striking. She was wearing a black and gold mid-thigh length sheath dress and fashionable matching ankle-high gold boots. Then as she passed I noticed that her left leg was a full-length prosthesis. The physical therapist in me had not noticed anything in her gait that would have given her away to my trained eye. My first thought: I wanted to stop and talk to her and examine that leg. Followed immediately then by huge admiration for her courage. She might have chosen to wear stylish pants or a long skirt. Her message to the world was clear. She knows who she is, has nothing to hide and is comfortable in herself. I was still pondering her message when she stood to let us pass in the same row to our seats. Without looking up I touched her shoulder: “I really admire your courage”. She thanked me.
As so often happens I spent the next week reflecting on the experience and her message. And God’s message for me, in the experience, as well.
There is a psychological tool called the Johari window, a technique that helps people better understand themselves and others. It is made up of four quadrants: one made up of adjectives someone and his peers might use to describe an individual; second are words, known only to himself, that person would use to describe himself; the third has adjectives, unknown to him, peers might use to describe that person; fourth is the unknown quadrant where no words are known by the individual or her peers. It is an important tool used in group-dynamic settings, but I find it an important way to think about relationship with God. I like to think of the fourth quadrant as those things about me that are known only to God. Certainly, there are things I hide from others, and from myself too, but more importantly I wonder about what it is that I hide or try to hide from God.
Scripture is replete with stories of people hiding from each other, hiding others, hiding from God and of God hiding God’s own face from people.
As I have come to understand the Celtic Spirituality Concept, that God is in all things (and this has taken me plenty of time), it has become a great comfort to me. I suspect that most of us cherish our privacy. In a world where we interface with technology, we are learning that privacy doesn’t exist. Still the idea that another being (God or not) can know our deepest thoughts is unnerving. Yet, coming to know a God of Love I can trust with my deepest being is such an awesome experience. Unless I want to, I don’t have to use words to communicate. This God knew me before I was born; knows the secrets of my heart; knows my every thought; and knows my needs before I know them
Ann Dolbier is a friend and supporter of Celtic Way.