by Holly Swafford
“Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” Psalm 37:4
“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Luke 12:34
At first glance, one might get a false impression of the meaning behind these verses. I think I used to get confused by these passages and think that they seemed to say “follow your own desires, and you will find the treasure that God wants you to find.” However, that is quite the opposite of its true meaning and doesn’t make much sense at all in the grand scheme of things. Let me expound on this topic of “treasure hunting.”
A few weeks ago, I heard a thought-provoking story of a teacher who assigned her class with a treasure hunt. She instructed the class that each student was to prepare for the hunt without talking about it to anyone besides herself. On the appointed day, they would bring their treasure hunting paraphernalia to class, and their teacher would give the best prepared student a 100%.
The story went that one student believed the treasure to be in some desert place, and so gathered survival gear to find the treasure in the hot desert sands. Another student prepared to travel to a far off island in hopes of finding the treasure there. One student decided that she would make her own map and follow her own heart in search of the treasure. All of these were denied the much coveted high score of 100%.
Only one little student in the class used enough wisdom to talk to the teacher about the hunt. Upon asking the girl where the treasure was, she promptly replied to the teacher, “In the closet.” Smilingly, the teacher pulled a giant A+ from the closet and handed it to the little treasure hunter.
There was a great moral to this story. Life can be a lot like a treasure hunt. As young people we want all we can get out of life, but we don’t know at times what it is we are looking for or where to find it. Some go searching to the ends of the earth in pursuit of pleasure, wealth, or success. Others try to make their own map and follow the desires of their own sadly deceitful heart.
It is the wise who realize their own insufficiency enough to ask the One who knows what the treasure is and how to find it. He has left us the Bible which is a treasure map all its own. God, in His wisdom, knows what is best for each of us, and we must allow Him to guide us to a treasure far greater than any we can encounter on our own. It is a treasure that never loses its luster and no thief can steal as long as we hold onto it with all that is in us.
The next time you are around the altar, remember to ask God what the treasure is. The
future can be a very daunting thing as a young person. Questions like: What am I going to do
after high school? Do I go to college or do I stay at home and work a job? Who am I supposed
to marry? all may go through your mind. The answer is that you can’t find the answers to these
questions on your own.
It is tempting to do what you want to do, but God knows where to take you in life, so let
Him. Give your desires up to Him and follow the map He has given you. Ask Him to teach you
His voice and show you His will. I firmly believe the happiest place to be is in the center of God’s will. Sure, you can follow the world’s map to success, Satan’s map to a “good time,” or your own heart’s map to short-lived pleasure, but there will be nothing as fulfilling as following God’s map to an eternal treasure that gives not only in this life, but also in the one to come.
Therefore, it is not that we can find some great treasure by our own delighting. We must delight ourselves in the Lord and take pleasure in the things of God. It takes the realization \ that He is the treasure we are seeking. And, as our delight in God grows, our desires will begin to align themselves with His desires. Thus, it comes about that He grants those desires, for our heart is following the Greatest Treasure.