A few years ago I counseled for Junior High week at Camp Mantowagan. This week was packed with activities to keep these pre-teens busy and entertained. One particular night we played a game of hide and seek between the counselors and campers. The counselors had to hide while the campers searched high and low for them. There of course was a major incentive for the campers to find their counselor. If a counselor was found they had to be the personal slave of the camper for the remainder of the week. I wanted to find a good hiding spot. I was tired enough from the responsibilities that week and to be honest the thought of serving one of these campers frightened me. As counselors discussed their secure hiding spots I stood there clueless. I didn’t know what to do! I didn’t know where to hide! I didn’t have the experience that the others had and I knew I was in trouble. So I panicked, “What do I do? Where do I go?” A few counselors had “the perfect hiding spot.” They gave me the details of where I could hide and in my desperation I listened. Well, there was only one counselor found this particular camp week and guess who it was? Yes, it was me. I couldn’t believe it! I didn’t know what to do so I put all of my trust in the co-counselors for guidance and security and all I found was a rotten hiding place. Thankfully the young lady who found me had mercy on me for the remainder of that week! In Psalm 118:8 the Psalmist proclaims, “It is better to take refuge in the Lord, than to trust in man.” In life we will find that there are many times when we just don’t know what to do. We don’t have the experience of others. We don’t have wisdom on a matter. We feel lost, helpless, and afraid. So we panic. We ask whoever will listen, “What should I do? Where should I go? How should I get through this?” Yes, Scripture is clear that we can find wisdom in the counsel of others but we shouldn’t be so quick to put all of our trust, all of our hope, and all of our rest in others. When we do this we will more often than not find ourselves caught in the struggles, confusion, or pressure that we are in. This Psalm is clear that it is better to hide in the Lord. It is better to take refuge in Him even if that means going without an answer and having to wait on Him to lead and direct. In God’s Word we are not promised all understanding or all of the answers to our issues but we are promised a place to rest.
This brings us to another passage of Scripture in which Jesus says, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28). Here is instruction from Jesus for anyone who is exhausted with trying to figure life out. Jesus instructs here, “If there is anyone weary with attempts and tries at getting things right or if there is anyone burdened by the worries and cares of this world than come to Me and find rest.” Notice Jesus doesn’t say, “If anyone is tired and burdened then try harder.” He doesn’t instruct us to keep trying to figure things out or to come to a final answer. He simply instructs us to come to Him. I believe that this has to do first and foremost with salvation but then with any issue, pressure, or dilemma in life that find ourselves burdened with. Jesus says, “Come to me and rest.” Now many people struggle with this because this sounds like ignoring the problem. It sounds like taking an easy way out or being lazy. We object, “I shouldn’t be resting when there’s this problem that needs fixed!” But what did Jesus instruct? He instructed us to find refuge in Him and as our Psalm instructed, “This is better!” We aren’t being lazy, we aren’t ignoring the task at hand but we our laying done ourselves and trusting in the work of Christ. It is better to take rest and refuge in Christ than any other man, including ourselves. All strength, all knowledge, all wisdom is found in Him.
We should definitely seek help in times of struggle but we should also know the refuge that we have in the Lord. He is our true hiding place. Do not be afraid to run to Him, cling to Him, and rest in Him when you have no strength, wisdom, or understanding of your own. Those who truly find their refuge in God will always find that He is enough. Even if their issues do not go away or even if their troubles increase they know that God’s grace is sufficient to meet any and all needs that they may have on this earth. If you find yourself in the midst of desperation today go to Christ. Sing praises to Him, cry out to Him, look to Him and even if He doesn’t answer or even if understanding doesn’t come make it your ambition to do what is better and rest in Him.
Seeking To Hide In Him With You, Pastor Rudy