We lived with our grandparents when I was growing up, and my grandmother was a very frugal woman. Christmas gifts from her were always practical and not what my sister and I wanted when we were children. But so, we didn’t show disappointment and hurt her feelings when opening them on Christmas morning, we devised a sneaky way of loosening the tiny bit of tape at one end of the package and peeking in to see if the box was from a department store or not. That way we could be disappointed ahead of time at her gift of pajamas or socks and manage to say thank you when we opened them fully on Christmas!
Now what does that have to do with this scripture? God showed me that this correlates with our universal human desire to know things ahead of time so we can try and control the circumstances. It is, in essence, a picture of original sin – wanting to be God the creator instead of the creation.
When God says He will show us the treasures to be found in darkness, my initial reaction is to say “what? I thought we were to reject darkness as something from the enemy. Or fight it or seek to replace it with truth and light”. At first, I could not see what God could mean by revealing “treasures” in darkness.
The past six months have been ones of deep pain for me – being rejected by a family member, accused of things I have never done, and blasted publicly through social media with lies about me. There has been nothing I could say or do to change that person or the circumstances. In holding the situation before the Lord, I asked Him “please, show me how to look at this, how to walk through it believing you have treasures in the overwhelming pain of the darkness.”
He has shown me four things.
First, I am to fix my eyes on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2). As I do, I have the assurance that He is WITH me. I have a firm foundation in Him, and He is not shaken, but present with me!
Secondly, I am to lay this burden at His feet and leave it there. That is the hard part for me, as I was taught from childhood to not depend on anyone else to do for me that I should do for myself. God showed me this is a trust issue that applies to Him as well, and He longs for us to trust Him and to know from experience that all His plans for us are good!
Thirdly, He wants me (and all of us) to lean in and listen for His words. As I have quieted the turmoil in my mind, words mostly from scripture have come to me – words of comfort, of vindication, of new direction. He has known the pain of betrayal, rejection, and loss. And He speaks into our hearts with compassion and great love.
And fourthly, He asked me to proclaim His goodness and mercy to myself and others as I believe His words (Psalm 145:9 and James 1:2-4).
Years ago, when several of us from this ministry went to a Leanne Payne ministry week at Wheaton College, we heard her talk about celebrating our smallness. It was a new thought to me, but it made sense. As we contemplate the magnitude of God’s creative power, and recognize our very limited human abilities, it is God’s intention that we rejoice in that! He is able, He is willing, He rewards our seeking Him with deeper fellowship with Him, He acts on our behalf, He supplies all our needs. He indeed gives us the treasures hidden in darkness, hordes of riches in the secret place, for He has called us by name, and we belong to Him.
What treasure is God holding for you in the darkness you experience?