I was on a plane where I usually like to invoke my introvert rights: stay quiet and to myself. As it was time to depart the plane, I stood up in my row to wait my turn. An older man was across the aisle from me and as I stood up he said to me, “There you are. It’s time to come out of hiding.” I smiled, a smile that says, “Thank you…but I don’t wish to engage in further conversation because what you just said to me has instantly stirred emotions in me that I wish to ignore!”

Come out of hiding. I am someone who prefers to stay behind the scenes. I would rather support than be in front. Call it shy, call it being an introvert, call it false humility/pride, call it whatever you would like. My jobs have reflected this, “Behind the scenes” way.

However, since this man spoke these words to me, I have been pushed forward in some degree. Through a new role at my job, I have slowly been coming out of hiding. I thought I was done with growing pains, but I am not. The pains are present and I have had to surrender to them.

I don’t like the spotlight, I don’t like being front and centre. Some people love it and are made for it! I’ve always been grateful for those people! But for some reason, through upbringing or through words people have spoken, I have declined the invitations throughout life to step out and into what God has for me. Maybe it’s lack of confidence or maybe it’s worth issues. It’s funny though, because the more God reveals and heals these roots in my life, the more I am coming out of hiding. It’s not rocket science to see how these two paths coincide!

There is a scripture that has really been speaking to me lately. Romans 8:19 (TPT), “The entire universe is standing on tiptoe, yearning to see the unveiling of God’s glorious sons and daughters!” I interpret this as the whole world, all the people in it, are waiting with eager expectation for those that love God to fully walk in all that God has called them to and once they do so, it will impact this world for the good and it will transform people’s lives because they are encountering the love of God.

Do you ever wonder why we get caught up at looking at ourselves and staying stuck in our issues longer than we should? I wonder if it’s to side track us from what the verse above states. What if we embrace our issues, gave them to God, not allow them to become our identity, work them out as some take time, and fully embrace all that God has put in our hearts to do. What if we walked in the full potential of what God has marked us with? Instead of staying behind the scenes, what if we walked out front with the talents, giftings and beautiful nature of who we are and share it with the world? To be real, selfishness keeps us hiding. I can say this because at the end of the day, I am being selfish by staying in hiding. It’s easier to stay here: I don’t have to step out, take a risk, I don’t have to deal with a spotlight…..me, me, me.

The world is waiting for you to embrace your identity and your purpose; to be fully who God created you to be and not be in shame because of it. Your family is waiting, your friends, the barista at your coffee shop, your co-worker, your family doctor – they are all waiting. You need to love yourself (all that God has made you to be) so you can love your neighbor. Secure in your identity. Secure in the purpose that was made for you.

Come out of hiding. The world needs you. Remove shame, remove pride, refuse the words spoken to you which have held you back. And please embrace what God has created you to be and thrive in this with all joy, assurance, courage and love.

No more hiding.