It It Time To Hide?
During Operation Desert Storm, I was in the Navy and stationed on board the ammunition ship USS Mount Hood. We were inside the Persian Gulf and had around 2500 tons of ammunition on board at any time. For us, there was one danger which was at the forefront of our thinking – mines. One particular evening, many of us gathered for prayer, as was our habit. While we were in prayer, in my mind I could see what looked like an angel on the bow of the ship moving a sword back and forth ahead of us in the water. I’m not saying I had a vision, but decided it was a comforting thought and moved on.
The next morning at 7:45 I went on watch in the Combat Information Center. Around 8:00, we received a message with the coordinates of where a mine had been found and destroyed, so I plotted it on the navigational chart. I even plotted it three times to make extra sure it was accurate. When I was finished, I stared at the chart and felt a sudden chill. The position of the mine was at the exact spot where our ship’s position was plotted from midnight just eight hours before! A quiet prayer of thanks was lifted to God for His protection, and I have never forgotten His care over me that night.

In scripture, David had similar feelings of praise and gratitude to God for preserving his life. Those thoughts were part of what the Holy Spirit used when inspiring David to write things like these:

You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble;
You surround me with songs of deliverance. (Psalm 32:7 NASB)

Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings, (Psalm 17:8 ESV)

For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle;
In the secret place of His tent He will hide me;
He will lift me up on a rock. (Psalm 27:5 NASB)

You are my hiding place and my shield;
I wait for Your word. (Psalm 119:114 NASB)

Of course, much is to be made of the will of God when it comes to our protection and preservation. But with the examples before us in the Bible of God’s promises of protection and safety, it should also be said that while there are times we are hurt, those times are the exception, not the rule. Of course we are not to presume upon divine protection by doing things purposely harmful and assuming that God has us covered. Such was the temptation in Matthew 4 when the devil tempted Jesus by telling him to cast himself down from the temple, because Psalm 91 says God would not allow him to “dash his foot against a stone.”

In the New Testament, the Apostle Paul makes spiritual application to divine protection. In the letter to the church at Colossae, he wrote, “For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:3 NASB)
Sometimes, the Lord’s plan is for us to openly resist. At other times, we are commanded to refuse to engage in a battle, especially since our battle is not against flesh and blood. But at other strategic times, God chooses to simply hide us from the enemy so that we are spared physical and/or spiritual harm. I think these were things that Fanny Crosby may have been meditating on in 1929 when she wrote the following poem that would become another one of her beloved hymns.

Hide me, O my Savior, hide me
In Thy holy place;
Resting there beneath Thy glory,
O let me see Thy face.

Hide me, when the storm is raging
O’er life’s troubled sea;
Like a dove on ocean’s billows,
O let me fly to Thee.

Hide me, when my heart is breaking
With its weight of woe;
When in tears I seek the comfort
Thou canst alone bestow.

Hide me, hide me,
O blessed Savior, hide me;
O Savior, keep me
Safely, Oh Lord, with Thee!

We do well to remember in the turbulent days ahead, that those who “dwell in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” (Psalm 91:1)

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