Getting back to the title of my post: “Where are you hiding?”
Proverbs 25:2 says, “It’s the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter.” At church on Sunday we had a guest speaker that said that God told her that He loved to hide great people in great hiding places.
Then He asked her, “Where did I hide Adam?”
She answered, “In the garden.”
“In a basket and then in the palace.”
“In a pit, in Potipher’s house, and in prison.”
“Keeping the sheep.”
“In the palace.”
Then He asked, “Where did I hide Jesus?” and answered for her “As a carpenter.”
I’ve thought of many more people God has hidden. There are many modern day people too. That amazes me.
One of the things I hate about moving is being new and getting though the questions that help you size each other up (I mean.. get to know new people). They ask Mike first.. “What do you do?” He has this great job that he loves.. he feels privileged to serve his country through what he does.. he works super hard.. and unto the Lord. I am very proud and happy for him. He answers simply, “I am a budget officer for the Air Force.” Thoughts run through their head about punching numbers all day… but it’s really much more than that.
Then they ask me, “So what do you do?” Since moving here my answer has been, “I am a stay at home mom.” They are thinking, “What? You stay home all day and eat Bon Bons while your husband works his fingers to the bone to support your family? How shameful.” I don’t know for sure that that’s what they are thinking, but I know that I have told just told them that I have four teens and that they can’t imagine how they could need a stay at home mom and the incredulous look on their face kinda gives them away.
I know that when I answer that way that I am being a little facetious, but something has gone wrong in our society that it no longer values motherhood when it stands alone. Do you realize that all this expectation on women to “do something with their lives” is a big part of what has made the cost of living to go up so high? I keep starting to rant. Thank God for the back space button. I’ll spare you.
All those expectations plus the high cost of living is destroying families. Little babies are put in day care, kids in school, after school programs, soccer, summer camp on and on. No one is ever home to see each other. When they are, the kids are either playing video games or doing homework and the parents are cleaning house or watching TV because they are too exhausted to do anything else. Families are being raised on fast food.. loosing their health.. getting more and more into debt… which causes more stress… Over half end in divorce and we wonder why. (Believe it or not this is not my rant.)
To correct my facetious answer Mike always adds, “She homeschools the kids.” I kinda wish he wouldn’t so I could rant. Their eyes get really big and they have this amazed look on their face as they say, “Wow! I don’t know how you do it. Homeschool four teenagers. You must have a lot of patience. I could never stay home with my kids.” They are thinking of me the same way I was thinking of missionaries. “Only angelic people can homeschool.” But it’s not true!!!
I am an ordinary person. Patience isn’t something that people are born with .. it’s a fruit of the Holy Spirit! I have wept, prayed, thrown plenty of impatient fits and prayed some more. That’s how you get patience.
We have chosen different standard of living by living on one income, shopped garage sales and at Good Will, and fed our kids baloney sandwiches instead of McDonald’s. Our kids never threw fits at the grocery store for candy or toys because they knew we couldn’t afford them. We all have to make choices. Through the years God had blessed us mightily through Mike’s job.
I have had to fight feelings inferiority and tell myself over and over that investing my life in my kid’s lives will pay off… even when it doesn’t look like it and they aren’t grateful. I’ve had to trust God that He knew what He was doing when He told me to homeschool and wouldn’t let me quit. I’ve had to pray for wisdom when I was in over my head and work and search for solutions long into the night.
As much as I love to rant that nothing is wrong with being a stay at home mom I also believe that God calls some moms to work. They carry a lot on their shoulders and many of them do a great job of being keepers at home as well. I do and don’t envy them. I pretty sure that I could never do it all. I am thankful for the life God has given me. I’ve made mistakes. I’ve had to apologize. I’ve failed. I am not angelic.
I have thought for a long time that the kids and I have been in hiding. We spend days on end at home and that feels like hiding. One day, when the time is right, each of us will come out of hiding and into the next phase of what God is calling us to do. I don’t know when. I don’t know if God will use any of us for anything “great” like He did Moses or Esther. But I do know that it’s good to be in God’s will.. whatever that is and that God needs sheep keepers and home keepers just as much as He needs kings.
So where are you hiding? Are you in business, sales, or a stay at home mom like me? Maybe you’re a farmer, a maid, or a fisherman like some of the Bible heros were. It doesn’t really matter as long as you are hearing God and hiding right in the middle of His will where He can use you exactly the way He created you. Don’t let anyone tell you that what you do is unimportant. As our guest speaker said, “Clean bathrooms in the church are just as important as good preaching.”
I heard this story on the radio yesterday. David Jeremiah was preaching about gifts and the body. Some of our most important body parts we do keep hidden.
The Parable of the Tools
by Davin Dahlgren, May 1996
A carpenter began to build a house. He had many tools which he used to accomplish various tasks. He had a saw for cutting. He had a hammer for driving nails. He had a measuring tape for making everything fit together according to his plan.
One day, as the saw surveyed the progress, it remarked to the hammer, “What a marvelous thing it is to build a house! It is a fine thing I have done!”
At this, the hammer was surprised. “What have you done? You just cut things, but I put them together!”
The saw was offended. “I am an important tool! For without me, the boards would not fit!”
This made the measuring tape speak out. “Without me, you would not know where to cut!”
The hammer laughed. “But surely you cannot suggest that my power is not more necessary than both of yours! Without me, the boards might fit, but they could not stay in place.”
“Come,” said the saw, “let us see who is the greater. I will cut, the tape will measure, and you will pound. Then we shall see whose job is the most necessary.”
The measuring tape spun itself out to show its great length while the saw scratched away furiously at a nearby board. The hammer pounded on some nails which lay nearby; all the tools worked furiously at their great works until they became tired. As they lay panting from their effort, the hammer noticed the box of nails next to it. The nails were quietly observing all the commotion. “You have seen all that we have done. Tell us, which of us performs the greater works?”
The box of nails replied, “We have watched you all carefully and this is our judgement. We have seen the measuring tape reeling itself out to measure all the surfaces around us, but look now — it has tied itself in knots and the kinks will not allow it retract itself. We have seen the saw scraping and scratching at every surface around us, and see — the edges it has cut are not straight and every place it has been is marred and cannot be used in a prominent place in the house. We have seen you O hammer, pounding away at our fellows there before you, and while your power is great, you have only bent them. Behold, even the wood is bruised where you struck it. Therefore, our judgement is that no one of you is great. For without the carpenter, you can do nothing. As nails, we do nothing. But the carpenter places us where he wants us and then drives us home. Though it is painful to receive the blows you give us, mighty hammer, we obediently accept them as necessary for the carpenter to build his house.”
The hammer scoffed at this. “So then, the nails think that they are the greatest, for they are the most abused! Do not forget that I strike my head against you, and certainly the saw is grieved when it is sharpened.”
The nails continued, “You have missed our point. It is not we who are great, but the carpenter who places us. We are only useful when he uses us. We have seen you try to work for your own glory — you only succeed in hitting the carpenter’s thumb. Be thankful that he is patient, or you would be thrown away in anger. It is only when you place yourself in the carpenter’s hand and allow him to guide you that you strike straight and true at the nail he has placed.”
That was a very encouraging post.
Yeah, I never how to answer people when they find out I home school and they say, “How do you do that?”