And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?”
The first thing Adam and Eve do when they sin is hide. They hide from God. They hide because of their sin. They feel guilt and shame, unworthy to be with God. So they hide.
How does God respond to this hiding? Does he turn his back on them? Fold his arms in disgust? Give them a disapproving scowl?
Hardly! He does the opposite. He pursues them. Seeks them. Chases after them. It’s the first game of hide and seek! They hide, God seeks!
When God asks Adam, “Where are you?” it’s not a request for information. Omniscience does not need to request information. God doesn’t need to ask, but Adam needs to be asked. God is drawing Adam out of hiding, ever so gently. God is wooing, drawing, pursuing. Just like he woos you.
Adam and Eve were hiding because of their sin. We do the same thing. When we sin, we run from God because we feel guilt and shame. We are uncomfortable with ourselves, uncomfortable with others and uncomfortable with God. So, we hide.
How do we hide? We hide with busyness, with shopping, with overwork. We hide with TV, with Facebook (ironically), with travel. We hide with humor, with sarcasm, with shyness. We hide in a thousand ways.
Me? I hide by being in control. (Or trying to be in control.) I hide with reading, by running, by asking questions. I hide in all kinds of ways, some of which I’m unaware of. I hide so well that sometimes I hide from myself that I am hiding!
How about you? How are you hiding these days?
Here’s the good news: You can stop hiding. Hiding is the core human strategy to deal with sin. God’s strategy is better: Confess your sin and receive God’s overwhelming grace!