Today I cleaned out my bedroom and looked at 25 years of our leadership as I read through emails and cards written to us, and it caught me off guard the grief that I would feel.
and I am dreaming a lot right now too. anyone else?
I processed a whole lot of beliefs I have had around the last five six having moved to Montreal. This was by far our boldest move in our life. This is where my deepest work is being done. And yet I feel like it is where I have been most hidden.
As we have been talking about the power of showing up, I do want to take today to bring another perspective to our showing up before we end our journey together .. and that is to address what happens on our journey when we feel like we are being kept hidden (and it is not our ‘time’ to show up).
The daughters of Z would have had a journey of feeling hidden, unworthy, unimportant and decided they had their time and chance to come forward.
Acts 7:22 “In just such a time Moses was born, a most beautiful baby. He was hidden at home for three months. When he could be hidden no longer, he was put outside—and immediately rescued by Pharaoh’s daughter, who mothered him as her own son. Moses was educated in the best schools in Egypt. He was equally impressive as a thinker and an athlete.
Yet we also know there are seasons of our life when it is not the right time to come forward. I have been thinking about some prophecies spoken over our lives and some words even spoken lately over our church and I want to encourage you that although they can factor very strongly in what is our rightful inheritance – I know they are not all in existence yet. This is the tension to manage.
And often it is because God is doing something more sustainable in our life and forming us into someone who could steward this inheritance.
There are times in our life where we feel like we are being kept in hiding – not that we are intentionally hiding on purpose but that God, for whatever reason, is keeping our life hidden. Hidden from anyone else. Where possibly people cannot recognize our potential or our ideas, our gift or talent in a way that you imagined God had promised. Or the dreams within your heart are hidden from reality. You could be starting from scratch, a new mum, a student with seemingly nothing to offer, ending a relationship, pioneering in new arenas or so much more ...
There were so many godly, faithful people in the bible whom God kept hidden until His time in the KINGDOM was perfect and the gift on a person’s life was ready to be received.
(This is a really long blog with lots of scriptures so read at your own leisure when you think this message may be for you)
So what could being kept hidden look like for you?
1. What you know is on your life is not yet bearing fruit
2. The dreams in your heart that are big – seem quite distant from your reality
3. Less ‘public recognition’ than you may have previously had
4. You could feel like you are being overlooked
5. Your world could feel smaller or restricted
6. The labour could feel unnoticed
7. Mundane and normal become important but unglamorous
And what does a season of ‘being kept hidden’ produce?
Read through this list of scriptures and reflect on a hidden season. This is where you can take some of the deep work that God has been doing in you and use it to cross the threshold of a new decade.
There really is an invitation to grow through a hidden season. It has changed me for the good.
I keep saying Canada has taught me how to be conservative and that is not a bad thing. I needed to not just go high risk or as responsively emotional. Canada has taught me how to be cautious and that too is not a bad thing. I am a high faith, go with the Spirit girl but I needed to learn wisdom. Canada has taught me that small beginnings can last for years. Canada has shown me I can be the problem of capacity, and I can be the solution for capacity. Canada has taught me to acknowledge limitations as a gift. Canada has taught me that I do not have to co-lead if Leadership is not a spiritual gift of mine. Canada has taught me how to endure the mundane and everyday in a way that I have craved all my life. Canada has taught me that not everyone understands the world that we have lived in, and that people need education before they can be exposed to new revelation. Canada has taught me how to stop being lazy when you live in the slipstream of momentum. Canada has taught me about intentional friendships, not surface connections. Canada has taught me about rhythm and disciplines and saving and character over gift. All because we pioneered again in hiddenness and a hard season. And I would never change a moment of it. So what about you? Do any of these resonate with you?
First of all – it is only ever a season! Be encouraged!
Mark 4:22 [Things are hidden temporarily only as a means to revelation.] For there is nothing hidden except to be revealed, nor is anything [temporarily] kept secret except in order that it may be made known.
God prepares you in that hidden season
Isaiah 49:2 And He has made My mouth like a sharp sword; In the shadow of His hand He has hidden Me, And made Me a polished shaft; In His quiver He has hidden Me.”
Humility & Grace
Zephaniah 2:3 Seek the Lord (all you quietly disciplined people) [inquire for Him, inquire of Him, and require Him as the foremost necessity of your life], all you humble of the land who have acted in compliance with His revealed will and have kept His commandments; seek righteousness, seek humility [inquire for them, require them as vital]. It may be you will be hidden in the day of the Lord’s anger
Because your real motives are exposed there
1 Cor 4:4 Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God.
Matt 11:25 At that time Jesus began to say, I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth [and I acknowledge openly and joyfully to Your honor], that You have hidden these things from the wise and clever and learned, and revealed them to babies [to the childish, untaught, and unskilled].
You can pass the test
I love saying to people that when you are being tested the teacher must be silent because it is their time to test whether you have learnt what they have been teaching you. So do not be afraid when heaven feels silent. You are sitting a test and God trusts that He has already taught you what you need and that you will pass the text.
1 Thess 2:3 [ No Hidden Agendas ] God tested us thoroughly to make sure we were qualified to be trusted with this Message. Be assured that when we speak to you we’re not after crowd approval—only God approval. Since we’ve been put through that battery of tests, you’re guaranteed that both we and the Message are free of error, mixed motives, or hidden agendas. We never used words to butter you up. No one knows that better than you. And God knows we never used words as a smoke screen to take advantage of you.
You find your calling there
Isaiah 41:9 The Voice
I have reached to wherever you are in the farthest corners of earth, and the most hidden places therein. I have called to you and said, “You are my servant. I have chosen you, not thrown you away!”
Isaiah 45:3 Amplified Bible
And I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, Who calls you by your name.
You find the ‘us’ instead of the ‘me’
Colossians 2:1 At the heart of the good news is a mystery hidden in ancient Scriptures but now exposed to the world through the lives of the church’s holy ones. This battle I am facing is huge. And I want you to know I do it for you, for all those at Laodicea, and for everyone else (even those who have never seen my face).
You work out who your friends are (who is beneficial in a hidden season)
It reveals who has ‘spiritual eyes’ to see and understand what is really going on for you.
But even if our Gospel (the glad tidings) also be hidden (obscured and covered up with a veil that hinders the knowledge of God), it is hidden [only] to those who are perishing and obscured [only] to those who are spiritually dying and veiled [only] to those who are lost.
AND WHAT ARE THE DANGERS OF OUR TIME BEING ‘KEPT IN HIDING?’
Living small minded
And the list goes on... trust me .. I have been there, no matter how long or short is the process, these various things can be triggered in you if you do not attend to your soul.
So let me encourage you to meditate on this scripture and know that God’s got you! He is holding you in the hiddenness.
13 Who has directed the Spirit of the Lord, or as His counselor has taught Him?..
25 To whom then will you liken Me, that I should be equal to him? says the Holy One.
26 Lift up your eyes on high and see! Who has created these? He Who brings out their host by number and calls them all by name; through the greatness of His might and because He is strong in power, not one is missing or lacks anything.
27 Why, O Jacob, do you say, and declare, O Israel, My way and my lot are hidden from the Lord, and my right is passed over without regard from my God?
28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, does not faint or grow weary; there is no searching of His understanding.
29 He gives power to the faint and weary, and to him who has no might He increases strength [causing it to multiply and making it to abound].
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary, and [selected] young men shall feebly stumble and fall exhausted;
31 But those who wait for the Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up [close to God] as eagles [mount up to the sun]; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint or become tired.
So if this is your ‘hidden season’, rather than your come forward and show up season, can I encourage you to do it well. Incredible things take place in this season and sometimes the most audacious and bold thing you can do is to just STAY THE COURSE!
Have you had a hidden season? If so what has it produced in you? Let’s take those lessons into the new decade!