A few days ago a gang of us from the Pure in Heart London prayer group took advantage of the good weather and went for a ramble in the beautiful Surrey countryside. There really is nothing quite like escaping the city for a day to avail of the restorative powers of green fields, fresh air, good chat and a visit to a country pub.
Whenever I go on such walks, I bring a handheld GPS device. They come in handy if you get lost, but more importantly you need one if you want to do some Geocaching! What is Geocaching? It is a GPS-supported worldwide treasure hunt. Unbeknownst to most people, Geocache enthusiasts have left small treasure troves all around the globe. At last count there were over 2.3 million such geocaches discreetly hidden in various public locations. The game consists of downloading their GPS co-ordinates onto your device/smartphone, walking to the location and foraging around until you find it. Once you locate it, you open it up and add your name to the list of Geocachers who have been there before you. And hey presto…you’re in on the game!
After a while you get better at finding them. You start noticing that when somebody hides something, they often leave traces of hiddenness in their wake. So when you spot a bunch of twigs and leaves that seem a bit out of place, you say to yourself “Ah, something is obviously hidden under there.”
I think it’s the same sort of deal with God. Once you begin to live the Christian life, praying, learning and loving as God asks us to, you begin to see God more easily in the daily encounters and events that are the fabric of our lives. After coming face to face with so much goodness, you begin to say to yourself, “Ah, God is obviously hidden in there!” So now rather than saying that God is hidden, I prefer to say that God is overtly hidden, because it seems to me that there’s something very obvious about his presence.