“I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD the God of Israel, who summons you by name.” Isaiah 45:3
The term Geocaching was first coined in 2000 by Matt Stum – geo for earth; cache originally meaning a hiding place where items can be temporarily hidden.
It can refer to memory caching, a place on your computer where frequently used information can be more easily retrieved. It can also refer to an honest-to-goodness outdoor treasure hunt where participants use GPS-enabled devices to find buried treasure.
Who doesn’t like a treasure hunt?
A number of years ago I went on a treasure hunt after a particularly painful time in life. Somewhere in the Bible were nuggets of truth about suffering and I was determined to find them.
Let’s get real – it hurts to hurt. When you are in the middle of a ferocious life storm you think only of surviving. It’s not until later, when the storm subsides, that you look back and find that the experience has changed you.
Hidden in the dark places of your pain are treasures. When realized and embraced, they will enrich your life.
I’ve discovered a few. Who doesn’t like a treasure hunt?
The Hidden Treasures in Suffering
- Increase your sensitivity to a hurting world
- “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
- Help you to clarify and prioritize your desires
- Think of your sufferings as a weaning from that old sinful habit of always expecting to get your own way. Then you’ll be able to live out your days free to pursue what God wants instead of being tyrannized by what you want. (1 Peter 4:1-2 The Message)
- Purify your heart
- Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine. When Jesus wraps this all up, it’s your faith, not your gold that God will have on display as evidence of His victory. (1 Peter 1:7)
Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny – C.S. Lewis
Prayer: God, You are free to interrupt my life. Do in me all that You need to do that You might do through me all that You long to do.