My hiding place: The secret place

Psalm 119--114

In Psalm 119:114 (KJV) we find the Verse of the Day for August 1, 2014:

Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.

The expression “secret place” is used in various places in the in both Old and New Testaments. Most notably, the term occurs in the Book of Psalms where the Hebrew word cether is translated “to hide or be concealed.” The words shelter, covering, or dwelling are frequently used rather than “secret place.” This word is used in Psalm 139:15: “My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.” The womb of a mother as a child develops is so described.

While the term generally refers to a physical location, it most often expresses a state of an intimate relationship with God. Verse 5 of my favorite Psalm puts it this way in New American Standard Bible:

Psalm 27:5

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

The website gotquestions.org  points out that the Psalmist is not referring to an actual tabernacle or tent in which he will hide from physical enemies, but he is speaking of the state of peace that God gives in the midst of trials and attacks.

This website also provides a discussion of Psalm 91:1 “which gives us the best illustration of the value of a secret place:” He that dwells in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty (KJV).

“Think of the secret hiding places we enjoyed as children. Imagine being ten years old and finding a secret hiding place under the stairs or in the honeysuckle bushes. You slipped inside, and it felt magical! You felt safe and protected from the world. You imagined that you could live there all the time and no one could find you. Often, you invited your best friend to share it with you, because secret hiding places are better shared with someone you love and trust.”

The term is used in the lyrics of this original song:

Oh, Lord, you are my hiding place:

A refuge from the currents of strife.

You sustain and comfort me by your grace.

Oh, Lord, you are my hiding place.

 

 

Oh, Lord, you are my hiding place:

When the enemy comes in like a flood.

I run to you and seek your face.

You work all things together for my good.

 

 

Oh, Lord, you are my hiding place.

Psalm_32_7

A related verse is found in Psalm 32:7 which is used as an epigraph or introduction to poem describing “the secret place.”

Intimacy

You are my hiding place; you shall preserve me

from trouble; you shall compass me about

with songs of deliverance.

Psalm 32:7

 

Flood my blood with love and remove all fear.

Fulfill this yielded vessel, clothe me and

Bring me closer, nearer than breath or tear.

Share with me the intimacy you planned

For man to cherish and enjoy before

You fashioned earth or gave to man his form.

Whisper divine secrets hidden in store

Within your heart, my shelter from life’s storm.

Fill my ears with words of peace that shall bring

Forth my lifelong song in your melody

That I may vocalize your will and sing

In one accord, in perfect harmony.

More intimate than friend or kin or wife

Is close-knit love God weaves within my life.

Not too long ago, without warning, a series of severe storms swept through the heart of the nation, leaving millions without power in its aftermath. In thinking about “storms,” I recall a number of original poems that focus on that subject. One of the poems contains this short piece:

Protect me

As a child runs to safety in his father’s arms,

So I, too, run to you, “my shelter from life’s storms.”

Lord, I long to dwell with you in the secret place,

My buckler, my shield, deliverer, my fortress,

Strong tower, defender, who responds to my prayer.

For Lord, you are faithful, who will establish me

And protect me and deliver me from evil.

 

Another song written from God’s perspective recognizes that He makes this promise:

I Will Deliver You

 

I will deliver you from the snare of the fowler.

As a bird escapes from the cage, so I will release you from captivity.

I will lift you up, out of the hand of your fiercest enemy.

I will draw you to myself and hide you under the safety of my wing.

 

I will deliver you from the raging deep waters.

The sea shall not overwhelm you, but I will bring you through the storms in peace.

I will lift you up, and bear you up on the wings of an eagle.

I will provide for you and hide you in my secret dwelling place.

 

This entire discussion brings to mind another song of great comfort “You are my hiding place,” offered by Selah:

 

 

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One Response to “My hiding place: The secret place”

  1. Brenda Johnson Says:

    Thank you for these words of inspiration.
    Love you.

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