Father God has brought me back to the very beginning.
One of the very first things He taught me as his light shone through the darkness of the earliest of our infertile days is how much He loves a treasure hunt. As you will see from my early posts on this blog, the name for this site – Treasures in the Darkness – comes from a verse in Isaiah 45 which talks of the secret riches God intends for us and enjoys revealing to us.
Over the last three years, in the process of crying out to him for my babies, I have become fascinated by the nature of my heavenly father and intrigued by the picture of the woman He intends me to be. Just lately He has reminded me of these early days and of the pleasure and thrill of the hunt for the gems He has stored up for me.
A particular Bible verse has followed us for the last three years – in different guises as it appears in both the book of Psalms and in Jeremiah 17. This particular verse has caused us some confusion, some study and a lot of joy and hope and has been repeated by strangers and friends, in church services and prayer meetings as well as during totally random situations. I have lost count of the number of times I have heard and read it!
I have heard that verses given again and again are often described as ‘inheritance words’ – prophetic declarations from God that are intended to be a gift, to be embraced and lived out for the rest of your days. They are verses to bring comfort, calm and encouragement; verses to stand on when the going gets tough; words that become your story. As this blogger puts it,
“An “Inheritance Word” is a word spoken in a desert season that stays with you your entire life. Graham Cooke has described it as a cup poured into the well of your life; something that becomes a part of you.
Speaking of desert seasons, Graham pointed out that desert seasons are times of hiddeness when God imparts. The desert is not punishment. In Mark 1 right before Jesus is sent into the wilderness, God says, “You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” The wilderness is the place where your life message is formed. John the Baptist went into the wilderness and came out declaring, “Prepare the way of the Lord”. His life message was to prepare the way for Jesus, that message was formed in desert; the alone times.
Just lately the momentum of the repetition of these two verses has increased to the point where I have laughed out loud upon receiving it: a text message, a passage in my Bible during a quiet time, a study session on an unrelated topic and then this banner hung high on the wall at a church prayer event we had never been to before:
I adore God’s sense of mischief and His passion to pursue us. I yearn to better submit to His challenge to continually search for Him; that we would know He is continually setting up scenes and events in our life for us to uncover more of Him. Sometimes we trip over these moments, at other times He whispers to us to come looking for them and still other times the words are so big we just can’t miss His heart for us! As much as I, like the next Christian, sometimes long for the neon sign in the sky to reveal the answer to my questions, I love to see God’s enjoyment of mystery and pursuit.
As I poured over books and commentaries, exploring the many layers of this verse that God keeps speaking over us I came across this observation, “It is often in times of difficulty that we put down deep roots”. It seems to me that God has repeatedly been telling us to channel our energies into getting stuck into His word and into making Him the central source – the life-giving living water – that we rely on while we ride out this time in our lives. As we know so often when times are easy we have a tendency to determine a greater independence from God. I know that during these last few years, as I have groped about in the darkness for Daddy’s hand to cling to, I have benefitted from His light as He illuminates the shadowy corners of my fears and highlights the path that I should travel. When I meditate on His word and ruminate on its meanings my life becomes a richer, brighter, more colourful tapestry.
If you are in a dry and weary time of difficulty can I encourage you to be like that tree in Psalm 1 and let the roots of your spirit trail down to the water’s edge. Drink long and deep and choose to stay awhile. Be like the deer in Psalm 42 and let your thirsty soul receive refreshment from God’s words.
Our great rewards are the pleasure of His presence, the opportunity to be blessed and bless others and the fruit borne by knowing Him more intimately.