COLUMN: No more hiding from God

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By Jon Rohr

We have a dog, she’s pretty big, weighs about 65 pounds and she may still be growing!  Anyway, like most dogs she is sensitive to our moods and she seems to know when she is in trouble. The funny thing is sometimes she knows she is in trouble before we do.  When that happens she sort of hides out from us.  There is a little corner in the basement and she’ll peek out from behind a chair to see how much trouble she is in.  When she does that we start looking for a puddle somewhere or for something she has chewed up.
In fact most of the time we don’t find anything, maybe she just feels guilty because she thought about getting into the garbage can, who knows.  But the fact is, if she doesn’t run up to meet us at the door, we know something is wrong.
A long time ago a man and a woman were in a garden and they did something they knew they shouldn’t do, so they hid.  The Bible says, “The man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.” (Genesis 3:8 NIV)  Sad to say, but just like our dog, they tried to hide their sin, thinking God would not find them out.
We can’t hide from God. He knows where we are and he knows what we have done. Hiding in the corner won’t help. Instead of trying to conceal our sin and failings, we need to confess them before God.  In another place the Bible tells us, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9 NIV)
The story of Christmas is the story of Jesus coming into the world so that we can have forgiveness, so that we won’t feel that we need to hide anymore. This year I hope you’ll start the holiday season by reaching out to God for help and hope, not hiding from him.  Remember, Christmas is the story of God’s love for us.  He loves you, and you can trust him.  Don’t hide from him anymore.