One evening in high school, a friend and I got out of our rail car, on a ride through a “haunted house” at an amusement park.
Of course, it wasn’t “haunted,” just mechanized, at least until we got out.
We would hide in plain sight, then move, then the fun would begin.
How do you prefer the ride? Mechanized or haunted? Dead or alive? Controlled or fun?
Psalm 104 claims that God clothes himself with splendor, majesty, and light, “stretching out the heavens like a tent… He makes the clouds his chariot… He touches the mountains and they smoke.”
Is that true? Science explains mechanisms; science is the study of cause and effect. But what causes all that is caused? It must be something like an uncaused cause, an “unreasonable” reason, an uncreated Creator.
Come to think of it, we are constantly surrounded by reasons for which there are no other reasons. For instance: reason.
What’s the reason for Reason? You can’t prove that Logic is logical.
Scripture claims that Jesus is the Reason, Logic, Way, Truth, Life, and Word of God that is God. And God is “Is-ness,” existence itself, the Good, the Beautiful. He is Love.
Does Beauty make the clouds his chariot?
Does the Word, Reason, and Logic of God stretch out the heavens like a tent?
It seems that God hides in plain sight and lets us decide if the ride is mechanized or haunted with Him.
God clothes himself with splendor and majesty.
Why does God clothe himself at all?
He stretches out the heavens like a tent, tabernacle, curtain, or skirt.
What would you see if you looked under God’s skirt, or behind the curtain, or into the tabernacle?
What is God hiding? Is it, bad… or good?
Perhaps God clothes himself for we need protection from him—unmitigated Beauty.
To look behind the curtain in ancient Israel was to be consumed by Glory.
Perhaps he clothes himself for he needs protection from us, which is to protect us from ourselves. There’s something in us that wants to take and consume the Good like fruit from a tree, rather than kneel and worship the Life of the Good like the soldier at the foot of the cross.
God is a consuming fire and a naked man crucified on a tree.
The only people allowed to see that he was both, the only people that could bear the weight of his Glory, the only people that saw him on Easter, where those who knew that before we took his Life, he gave his Life—he fore-gave his Life.
Psalm 104 claims that when God removes his breath, we die.
And when God sends his breath, we are renewed, resurrected and reborn.
At the cross, we tried to take the breath, and God gave his Breath.
The day the Life was given to us on a tree is a revelation of what God is doing all the time… and perhaps, a revelation of what we do all the time? We try to turn the Good, the Beauty, the Way, the Truth, and the Life into a thing… a dead thing.
So why does God clothe himself? …because he is so Good.
And why does God remove his breath? …to show us that the Good is the Life, and it is free. We can’t “take it,” we can only “receive it.” God is Love.
What would you see, if you looked under the skirt of the tabernacle, or behind the veil in the temple of your own soul?
You’d see a lamb standing on a throne bleeding for all creation.
You’d see the Life, who is the Good in flesh, hanging on a tree in Eden.
You’d see Jesus crucified in the garden on Calvary.
You’d see the tree of Life in the middle of the New Jerusalem coming down.
It’s there at the beginning of your time, the end of your time, in the midst of your time, and every time you encounter “the Good” or ponder “Life.”
He’s hiding in plain sight.
When my children were little, they would have me hide in the basement and then come looking for me. It was their favorite game.
I’d hide in plain sight and they’d wonder, “Is that a lamp, a monster, or Daddy?”
Then I’d jump out from behind the boxes, grab them, hug them, and blow bubbles on their tummy as they squealed with delight.
The basement was haunted—or enchanted—with me, and that’s the way they liked it.
The universe is haunted with the Spirit of your Heavenly Father, but how do you like it? …mechanized or enchanted, dead or alive, controlled or fun?
“Does God exist?” is not a question that God is interested in, until you answer the question, “Do I want God to exist?”
And so, he clothes himself in stars, clouds, rainbows, and light.
He lets you feel his breath and his absence… although he’s hiding in plain sight.
Very soon he’ll jump from behind the boxes, may you trust him when he does.