Finding A Sweet Hiddenness in God

Finding a Sweet Hiddenness in God

About 10 minutes from my childhood home in Wyoming, you’ll find Sinks Canyon State Park, at the base of the Wind River Mountains. The locals call it “the sinks,” which is actually the name of a unique geological formation (I plagiarized that wording from the park website) where the raging waters of the Popo Agie River vanish underground.

I don’t think I’ve ever gone there without speculating, in childlike wonder, about what happens to the water as it travels underground. There’s a sense of exciting mystery, when an entire river just disappears from sight.

The Lord brought this image to my mind, as I’ve been laboring to blog more and more. So many times I’ve sat in front of my laptop with the cursor blinking loud on a blank page.

Lord, I’ve prayed, How is it possible that you’re doing so much work inside of me and I feel like I can’t write about it? I’ve never had more content to write about than I have in the last months, but I’ve never felt more inhibited to put the words on paper.

But finally the Lord has given me words, to describe to you what’s happening: The Water of Life has carried me underground. His beautiful and spectacular raging waters have swept me to a hidden place, where most of the work happening inside of me is where no one can see, and it’s so special and intimate that I can’t even share it –often don’t want to share it.

Is this a temporary hiddenness?

The Popo Agie pops back up from its subterranean journey, and you can drive down the road and feed the fish there. But I don’t know about this river ride with the Lord. Does he take each soul permanently to a deep, private place?

Luke tells us:

Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed. (Luke 5:16 NIV)

I wonder how much of Jesus’ relationship with God was underground. When we read about his daily activities with people, are we only seeing a very small part of what he was really experiencing with God on a daily basis?

In Unseen: The Gift of Being Hidden in A World That Loves To Be Noticed, Sara Hagerty says:

No one knew this conversation I was having in my head with God. And I was starting to like these secret exchanges.

Dallas Willard, in The Divine Conspiracy, talks about the “discipline of secrecy” –the practice of doing good works only for God to see.

A secret, underground life with Jesus? Tell me that’s not intriguing. It’s a new thought for me, as I read Paul’s declaration:

For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.  (Colossians 3:3 NIV)

What does this mean for a blogger who likes to share with others what God is doing in her life? Maybe it means I have less I can share with you, even as God is working ever more powerfully and beautifully in my heart. Or maybe this is a season of private worship and growth for me, and sometime down the way the Water and I will pop back up, to be visible again?

I don’t know.

But if you don’t hear from me as often as I’ve written in the past, I hope you’ll feel the exciting mystery of my vanishing. At the same time, I hope you’ll long to go deep and intimate with God yourself. Follow Jesus’ lead and withdraw, as often as you possibly can, to lonely places and pray. (Women, we can do this mentally, without leaving our homes, so don’t despair.)

What is God doing in your heart right now that is very private and just for him to see?

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  1. Diane Nickerson says:

    Oh, thank you for sharing this. You put so beautifully into words what I have been feeling. You are one of those perspicacious bloggers who are able to take everyday things and turn them into wonderful word pictures and life/Bible lessons. I so appreciate that.

    You are missed when you aren’t blogging, but it is wonderful to hear what the Lord is doing in you during the silent times. There is just nothing like the Living Water taking you deeper. Any posts you write will be appreciated; you’ll be prayed for the rest of the time nonetheless.

    1. Well, I had to look up “perspicacious,” to see if you were complimenting or not. Hahaha! Thank you for the kind words, friend. You’ve encouraged me so many times. Thanks for the prayers, too -so valuable to me!

  2. I am in that same place. I have taken time off of most all social media and spending a lot of time in the WORD and with the Lord in prayer. It has been amazing. Thanks for sharing your heart my friend.

    1. A deepening walk with God makes a lot of the fluff of social media feel flat. I get that!

      1. Yes, it does Christy. Well said.

  3. Cindy Merritt says:

    Christy, your honesty and transparency are beautiful and I’m thankful for your writing. Excited to hear when you’re ready to share!

  4. Christy, this post meets me right where I’ve been for a long while. I have described it as being in “isolation with my Savior.” What I have been going through is not fully explainable to those even the closest to me, certainly not those in my Bible study or the like. I’ve always been a believer who SHARES. He has closed my mouth as He is working in my heart and spirit. Drawing closer than ever before in my 48 years as a believer, it is both wonderful and daunting to go here. My circumstances, though severe, are still in the hands of my Lord. I trust His love for me more than ever. Thank you for this mental image God gave you. May He be doing great things in your soul, sweet sister in Christ.

    1. It’s wonderful and mysterious, isn’t it? I wonder why we aren’t taught more about this interesting direction of our relationship with God.

    2. It’s wonderful and mysterious, isn’t it? I wonder we aren’t taught more about this interesting direction of our relationship with God.

  5. Tina Gilbert says:

    I’ve recently gone through a divorce ((?)) and, after having been under a sort of covering all my 21 years of married life, as well as under my parents and others’ godly influences, I find myself “alone” and not sure how to do life as a solo believer! I’m so used to following the lead of others, that I’m feeling kind of lost and bewildered and a bit overwhelmed. However, as I continue walking forward, striving to be my utmost best for the Lord, I am sensing that He is sort of timing the ground for a fresh work in me. So I will keep on keeping on, trusting, obeying, and loving Jesus more and more. I love this picture of going underground with the Living Water, Christy! I think it’s what I needed to hear today, as I seek to understand just where I am these days. I’m so delighted that I am “in Him” and that He has not let go of me! ?️? tina

    1. Tina Gilbert says:

      *tilling the ground ?

    2. Sadness!!! I’m so sorry, Tina. I’m convinced that divorce is even more painful than losing someone to death. For myself, I always pray that my relationship with Jesus will be so close and intimate that even if I lose the things or the people that are most important to me, I will still be deeply satisfied in Him. I pray this for you as well. May God surprise you with his comfort, as you grieve and learn to walk this new path you’re on. Hugs to you.

      1. Tina Gilbert says:

        Thank you so very much for the encouragement! ?

    3. I am praying for you Tina! I was separated from my husband but now we have decided to try to reconcile and restore our marriage and with God leading the way, I know all things are possible.

      I do know that ALONE feeling and I just want you to know that the LORD will always be by your side. He will make a way, when it seems there is no way. This can be a time to draw closer to the Lord and to see all that HE can and will do for you. Hugs and prayers my sweet sister in Christ.

      1. Tina Gilbert says:

        Thank you so much, Gina! ❤️ Beautiful & encouraging words. Yes, I have been DELIGHTING in Christy’s words from this post … diving deep into the secret & quiet places where the Lord just has me for now. It’s a struggle when I start thinking of “other things” … until I remember {by the Holy Spirit} to keep quiet, be still, rest in Jesus, remain “in Him” as I seek to understand and know Him better! ?️? God bless you and your dear husband with a refreshed and brand new marriage relationship!!! It’s gonna be better than before, I’m sure of it!!! ?❤️❤️?

  6. Pamela Shaw says:

    Thank you for sharing. I thought I wasn’t hearing from you as often as usual, now I know why 🙂 I sense something the same in my own life. I’ve just finished reading John Bevere’s ‘Drawing Near’ and sense the same excitement from him as you are expressing. May we all be motivated and challenged to seek an even closer, living relationship with Him. In the meantime, until next time, whenever that may be, you take care x

    1. I’m going to have to add that book to my list! I will take care -thanks for the sweet note.

  7. Anne Marie Ezzo says:

    What a meaningful post Christy .. not sure if it’s the season of life as we are continually maturing in Christ or what, but your words touched my heart deeply and expressed thoughts that have been deep within me as well, but couldn’t really explain it, even to myself. Suppose there is a comfort in seeing/reading that others too are in this ‘hidden place’. Thank you and may God continue to bless you in this journey of life and growing in Him.

    1. It’s interesting to me that “hiddenness” is a new concept. I don’t feel like it’s something I’ve heard taught, but I’m seeing more evidence for this in Scripture. It encourages me to hear you understand what I mean.

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