the professional hider :: a guest post by jenny rain

Jenny Rain is passionate about missions in Africa, deep relationships with God and others, and a myriad of other fun things. She and her new husband live in Northern Virginia. You can find her on her blog, Jenny Rain: Rainmakers and Stormchasers, or follow her on twitter @JennyRain. When I first read the post you are about to read, I was immediately struck with the similarities: Wow. She hides just like me. Perhaps you will see yourself here as well.

I am a professional hider. Whether it is skating through a crowd to find an elevator I do not have to share, or eating lunch in my office to avoid the lunch crowd, I know how to hide. I hide because of fear.

Fear has been a constant companion in my life, but not a welcome one. It has been an uninvited straggler in my attempts to prove myself in the world. The weight of fear has lumbered awkwardly like an extra appendage and tethered my should-be-soaring-leaps to the flattened landscape. Like a genetic anomaly, fear has woven its code into the DNA helix of my life. I hide because of shame.

When I was younger shame tangled around my ankles and wound itself like a creeping vine around my abilities. By the time I was six, the roots had embedded themselves in my life and I could barely move. Most of my younger years were spent encased in my toy-room creating make-believe worlds with my Barbies. They had fancy toy cars, lots of friends, and lived in a world inaccessible to my tiny imagination.

I lived my life behind a mask. My masks took many forms . . . self-reliance, people-pleasing, religiosity, intellectualization, corporate success, infatuation with beauty, and relationships. But the masks were all formed as a reaction to the same two villains named: Fear and Shame.

Hiding was so natural for me. It was no longer what I did, but who I was. Like Adam and Eve, the fig leaf was no longer an unusual decoration in the land of freedom, it had become my permanent wardrobe. Yet even in my hiding, God saw me and loved me into being.

He knew my heart rhythm. When I placed my hands over my ears to drown out the fluttering palpitations of my
heartbeat, God heard a melody. When I plugged my ears to the screams of my silenced heart, God tuned into my aria. He was never afraid. He was never ashamed of me.

And it was in His knowing that I reached up my tiny fingertips and clung to His Vine of hope. I dug my toes into the sides
of the muddy hole I was stuck in for leverage, leaned my entire weight on the Vine, and allowed the Vine to heave me
out of the pit into freedom. There are days that I still hide, but now I realize it is a choice, its not who I am.

I am thankful for this reminder this morning – that the hiding is sometimes a way I cope, but it is not who I am. To learn more about Jenny, visit her blog and say hello.


  1. says

    Wow. You could have opened my heart and head and dipped that right out of the deep.
    I live this, and am learning to let God in more each day. He is so good.

  2. says

    Oh wow! (tears) this is such a powerful post! I can really relate to what she has to say here. Sigh…God is reaching in and pulling me out of my comfort zone this week. Sometimes its easier for me to be open and honest about what I stand for in Christian women’s circles online than it is in person. I can relate to wanting to hide in large groups. Thank you so much for sharing your friend and Jenny- to you for sharing your story. God bless you!!!

    • says

      Bless you Mary… so glad God is reaching in and touching your heart today… may you enjoy His beautiful Presence and rest in His Amazing Grace today…

  3. says

    Yes. I so could have written this post, except for I’m not that eloquent. This described me all the way. I have come out of my hiding somewhat in the last couple years, but there are still many times when I do still seek refuge, and I’m good at hiding. Appreciated this post!

    • says

      Thanks Brittney… I still hide at times too… but the great thing is that we know God reaches down and finds us where we are and accepts us no matter what… so freeing…

  4. says

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Jenny. I always used to be an intro-vert and recently I realized it’s not being I wanted to be humble, but more because I was afraid of what others thought of me, in a sense, it’s the same as being egotistical, I was so wrapped up with my self-image, and preserving it. Not seeking identity in my thoughts, and mind has helped.

    • says

      so true… I’ve had to learn a lot of that too… self-loathing is just the opposite side of the coin of self-love – same thing, different side… God has been teaching me to find my identity in Him and rest there… no matter what… it is so liberating. bless you…

  5. says

    Again, this transparency is so awesome. I also hide. Recently suffering a mental breakdown, I am fighting the urge to hide away from others, and even God (as IF I could!) I seem to what to define myself as a hider, but I have to make that decision, that it is just something I do, it is NOT who I am. I am His child!
    Thank you so much for these words!

  6. says

    Fear and shame – those dark culprits. I like the freedom I feel as I read your post. I can feel the warm sun shining on my face as I come out of hiding and be myself. I’m so glad this is happening for you too.

    sisters in Christ

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