I remember reading some time ago that the reason kids love hide and seek is because they really want the thrill of knowing that someone will find them.
Last night I found myself dreaming that I was hiding, and I really wanted someone to come and get me. I don’t remember the context of the dream, other than this realization when I awoke.
I was waiting for someone to find me.
Hoping with every bit of my soul that SOMEONE would find me, would care enough to notice I was missing and seek me out.
I remember being a kid and being involved in a neighbourhood game of hide and seek. I was it, but I couldn’t find any of my friends. I got frustrated and gave up. I walked home, and got engaged in something else, as kids will do. After awhile, my friends called my mom to see if I was there. Finder became hider, and they worried for me, wondering why I had dissappeared.
We all want to be found, to be important enough to someone that they miss us when we are gone.
I am someone who struggles with faith stuff, especially in these last 10 years, and yet somehow, the thing that kept popping into my head as I laid there in the early hours of morning was the parable about the shepherd leaving the 99 sheep to find the one that was lost. There is something so elemental, so beautiful in that story, that draws the lonely hearted and hopeless to a place of assurance that there is One who will care enough to seek them in their isolation and grieving.
When the littles play hide and seek, and Elijah gets distracted and moves onto other things, leaving India hiding, she gets incredibly upset. To be forgotten, cast aside as insignificant in the moment, as less important that lego, truly hurts her. I always ask Elijah, in those moments, to set aside what he is doing and finish the game, if only to the point of finding her that one last time.
So as I ponder these things, (and apologize for the scattered nature of the thoughts), I wonder how we can, in our communities, finish the game. How can we find those that need the assurance that someone gives a damn, seek them out and let them know that we see them, and that someone cares enough to bring them home, to welcome them and give them rest?
Is it inviting someone to supper,even though it might be awkward?
Is it offering an exhausted spouse a guilt free sleep in day no matter how late they were up saving the world (this is code for video gaming) the night before?
Is it pulling a cranky child onto a lap for a cuddle and telling them how much you love them?
Perhaps shutting our own mouths for long enough to really HEAR how a friend is struggling?
1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
Ready or not….here I come.