For many the existence of evil in the world effectively hides God from them.    As believers we hold that God manifested himself in the person of Jesus Christ.

But there is also a hiddenness in the life of God made man.    The gospels tell of  three phases of the life of Jesus: his so-called hidden life, his public life, and his passion, death, and resurrection.  The longest phase, his hidden life, is the one about which we know the least.  Yet that hidden life speaks powerfully of the fact that God truly became one of us in the person of Jesus Christ.  It shows Jesus as truly human.

That God in the person of Jesus Christ chose to live thirty years in obscurity and seclusion is certainly a mystery, something that makes no sense humanly speaking, something that we cannot really understand or explain.  It is something that can be grasped only by faith.  The hidden life of Jesus reflects a kind of hiddenness in our lives.

What is most real in our lives can be grasped only by faith.  What is most important in our lives is something that simply cannot be proven in a rational way.  Our normal, commonplace, often boring, life is the arena in which the hidden super natural life is practiced.  It is the way in which faith in the hidden God as the center of our lives must be practiced.

There was a certain hiddenness of Jesus even in his resurrection.  He did not appear to his persecutors to show then how wrong they had been.  He did not appear to large crowds.  He appeared to only a few of his closest friends.  Amazingly, they did not recognize him at first.   He remained hidden even to those close followers, at least initially.  It seems Jesus no longer looked like himself.  When Mary Magdalene saw him she thought he was the gardener.  When he appeared to his disciples on the shore of Lake Tiberius they did not recognize him at first.  Those two disciples on their way to Emmaus did not recognize him even while they conversed with him at length.  It seems those disciples to whom Jesus first appeared were unable to recognize him as they normally had in the past, by his face, his voice, his size.  They had to recognize him in a new way – as risen.

Our challenge is to recognize Christ coming to us in the events of our daily lives.