I woke up this morning to the sound of birds overhead and babies next door. While the sun warmed up, I drank coffee, read the Bible and ran through the plan for the day with Jade. Today, like every day lately, we’re hidden. No, we aren’t in hiding. We’re hidden. Hiding is a place for shame or fear. Hidden is a place where your unseen by mostly everyone but God. Today, like every day lately, our work is mostly unseen.
With a second cup of coffee I sit down at my computer to plug away at another chapter in a book that isn’t finished, another lesson in curriculum that isn’t done and a list of emails that will mostly solicit a reply or two. I push my work aside when an eager university student arrives at our gate. We study and discuss for an unplanned 4 hours. Jade isn't going to the village today, she’s going down the street to a tiny shop in the slums. Before she can distribute or teach, she needs products to take with her and lessons to follow. She affectionately calls days like today in the tailoring shop ‘a laboratory for her heart’. She’ll spend her day inspecting seems and cuts and quality. She’ll take three hours to do 3 minutes of work because conversations are most important. Our hidden work is the heavy lifting of ministry that happens before most people know anything has happened. It’s preparation but it’s also the core of the work. Hidden work is the study before the teaching, the training before the delivery, the hours and hours that come behind and before. I’m fulfilled in the hidden work of interviews, heavy study and prayerful thought. Jade is at her best in the work before the work where discipleship happens one-on-one. We move in weakness without a preceding hidden.
As Jade and I think about our hidden work, we wonder who else is hidden this morning. What are you doing that is vastly important to God’s ministry through your life while remaining unseen, unrecognized and hidden to everyone around you? Before the famous walk on the water, Jesus showed us his hidden ministry: “After he had sent them away, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone.” Who are you when you’re alone? Hidden ministry is a potent force. Are you hidden?