The Good Word  

 November 1997
Every man needs a hide-out.  Butch Cassidy and the Sun Dance Kid used the hole-in-the-wall area near the western border of Colorado and Wyoming as their hide-out.  It was here that they and their gang could retreat to enjoy peace and some respite from pursuit by their law-enforcing enemies.

John Grey (Men are from Mars . . .) says that men retreat into their "cave" when stressed or seeking escape.  It seems it is the manly thing to do.  But what is the nature of this cave or hide-out?

For millions of men the cave consists of sports: bowl games, series and tournaments.  Through vicarious participation in these activities we escape.  For many there is participation in various leagues.

Other escapes may involve games, hobbies, artistic endeavors or various intellectual pursuits. And none of these activities, including the most vigorous athletic efforts, are necessarily denied to women.  Both men and women seek their own hide-outs, with differences to suit the individual.

The challenging questions are: from what are you hiding?  And what is YOUR hide-out?

These important questions deserve more than a superficial answer.  After all, if you are spending major time and effort on an activity, don't you think you should know why?

The book of Revelation (chapter 5) describes a scroll that is written on both sides and sealed.  This book contains a description in detail of the lives of everyone.  Interestingly, no one is able to open the book and look in it!  No one can truly face their own life.  Hence the need for a place to hide.  In fact, in chapter six, we find everyone hiding in caves and among the rocks of the mountains.

We are continually seeking a way to keep from confronting our miserable existences.

In Revelation, someone is found who is able to open the scroll.  That someone is none other than the slain Lamb, Jesus Christ.  This is a remarkable thing.

Though we are unable to come to grips with our lives (and continually seek escape), Jesus is able to look fully at our lives because he has come to grips with who we are.

In another book of the Bible, John (the author of Revelation) says that Jesus didn't need anyone to tell him about man because "he knew what was in a man."  (John 2:25)  Over and over the Bible tells us that we do not know or understand ourselves but that God, in Jesus, understands us:  We don't have a savior "who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses".  (Hebrews 3:15).  In fact, the great King David said that God "remembers that we are dust".  (Psalm 103:14)  That is, he remembers that we are weak and prone to error.

It is from such considerations that we learn that the only way we can learn the truth about ourselves, and hope to come to grips with all that life has to offer us, is to come face to face with this god-man, Jesus Christ.

What is your hiding place?  You will not find yourself on the football field, in the kitchen or concert hall.   Nor will you find yourself and become the person you are destined to be by looking into your family or friends.

You are a noble person, destined for greatness and service.  You can learn this on a deeper and deeper level by looking deeper and deeper into Him who is your life.  Set your mind on this, for your life is now hidden, not in some hole-in-the-wall, nor in some life consuming passion, but in the person of Jesus Christ.

Your life is now hidden with Christ in God.  When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.  (Ephesians 3:3,4)

Again, you may say with King David:

You are my hiding place.  (Psalm 32:7)

This issue of The Good Word focuses on how and why we avoid the most important relation of our lives, with Jesus Christ.  I recommend to myself, as well as to you, this most excellent of all hiding places.

Your friend, Herb Sorensen