I’m guessing we’ve all encountered this type of conversation:
“How are you?”
“I’m fine. How about you?”
“I’m doing okay, thanks.”
This type of exchange happens all the time – at school, at work, at church, and everywhere in between. I don’t know about you, but I don’t even think about my response anymore when someone asks how I’m doing. It’s a reflex to answer – I’m fine. I answer the same way no matter how I’m actually doing. I think it’s safe to say a lot of us do the same thing because it’s an easy, short answer. It’s easier to say, “I’m fine” than to go into the details of why we aren’t fine.
The same thing can happen in our relationship with God. Some of us keep saying we’re fine when deep down we know we aren’t. Some of us pray and just focus on the surface level of our lives. It’s easier to talk about the issues on the surface of our lives. It’s easier to talk about the things that are far away from our hearts. It’s easier to say we’re fine and hide the rest.
It’s much more difficult to look deeper into our hearts and dig up the hurtful parts. The parts that fill us with shame and regret. The parts that make us feel unworthy. The parts we’ve put off dealing with because it’s too painful. We hide our sin, our fears, and our regrets. We hide our confusion and our questions. Some of us even hide our deepest hopes, dreams, and desires for our lives.
More often than not, we hide because we’re afraid. We’re afraid of digging things up and going through the work of healing. We’re afraid we won’t reach solutions or get answers. We’re afraid of the time it takes to talk through things and heal. We hide our sin and regret in fear of unforgiveness. We hide our hopes, dreams, and desires because we are afraid God won’t give us what we desperately want or need. Maybe some of us are even afraid that God simply won’t come through for us and we aren’t sure if it’s possible that he’s really good.
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.
Notice how this verse says that he delivers us from all our troubles. Not just what’s on the surface. Not just the things that are easy to talk about. Nothing that troubles us stands a chance against our God.
Take a look at what the apostle Paul says to the church at Philippi:
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done.
There is no problem too big or too small to bring to God. There’s isn’t a single thought you think that he isn’t interested in hearing. Pray about everything!
Jesus is not someone we have to put a brave face on for. He’s not waiting for us to impress him with how put together we are. We don’t have to play it cool with him and hide what’s going on in our hearts. Reality is that he already knows. Jesus is our dearest friend. That means we don’t need to hide from him – we need to confide in him. So today, let’s move from hiding to confiding. Take the time to work through these questions and begin to confide in the Lord through honest prayer:
- What are you hiding from God? What do you avoid bringing up in prayer?
- Why have you been hiding?
- What is your honest answer to the question “how are you?”
- What are your deepest desires for your life?
- What do you need healing from?