Mel Fisher made national news on July 20, 1985 when his crew discovered the $450 million treasure of the Spanish galleon Atocha. How exciting it must have been when the murky water cleared, and the first glint of gold struck the eyes of that weary group.
Mr. Fisher’s ability to inspire his team to continue seeking day after day was said to be the key to his success, second only to years of dutiful research and study of the clues left behind by historians. Today, he continues to scour the bottom of the ocean off the shores of Key West in the hopes of finding more gold doubloons, “pieces of eight,” and precious jewels.
Visions of high adventure on the hunt for some long forgotten bounty occupied my mind well into my adult years. I would daydream about trekking through a forest hot on the trail of a chest full of money hidden in some obscure cave in the mountainside. Although, I have never been able to live out these fantasies, I have discovered another treasure more valuable than any amount of worldly wealth that I could have ever imagined. The best news? The map to this fantastic treasure is contained inside the best-selling Book of all time.
Unfortunately, the world does not hold the Words of God as priceless, instead giving more value to material possessions. However, Scripture clearly states that God will reward those who diligently seek Him. (Hebrews 11:6) In addition, if God promises to give a reward, then we can be sure it will be “exceedingly and abundantly beyond all that we can ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20). Are you ready to see what reward God has in store just for you? Let’s get started.
What does it mean to seek after something? The Oxford dictionary defines this verb as follows: to make a search or inquiry for; endeavor; ask for; hunt. From the definition, we can gather that the process will take some time. The Bible states that we must seek God with our whole heart. Successful treasure hunters committed their lives to doing whatever it took to find the bounty. This same dogged determination is mandatory when it comes to searching the Scripture. Now that we know what we have to do and how we have to do it, it is time to get our map.
An authentic map is first on the list of any would-be treasure hunter. There are various translations of the Bible available today in different styles of language from old world English to modern day speech. If you were to choose a treasure map, you would also want to be sure that whoever drew it obtained the images and clues from the proper places. Whatever version you decide to use, be certain it was derived from authentic sources.
If you have ever seen the television series “Treasure Hunters,” you will notice how intently the competing teams study the clues. They often speak in hushed tones to try to limit the distractions as they work to put together the next piece of the puzzle. Likewise, read your Bible in a quiet place. Some people like to set aside a certain time of day to read. Others, like me, find reading a certain amount of Scripture per day a better way of learning. Remember that you are on a treasure hunt. When you open the pages, bear in mind that you are studying words from ancient manuscripts written thousands of years ago. Diligence and intensity will aid you in your quest. Moreover, remind yourself that the reward you seek will come from God Himself!
Where should you begin your hunt? There are many Bible study programs available on the internet and included in many popular Christian magazines. Once you pick your starting point, ask God to direct your study. Soon, you will feel the tug of the Holy Spirit in the direction He wants you to go. Follow that still, small voice urging you on to the next gem waiting for discovery.
Another important part of the treasure hunt is to keep the Words close to your heart during your every day life. Ponder the thoughts that break into your reverie as you wait to pick up the kids, or while mowing the lawn.The host of “Treasure Hunters” gave this advice to the teams: “Where you have been and what you have found will tell you where you need to go.” This advice holds true for our adventure as well. The insights gained are God’s way of nudging you down the path toward the treasure He has prepared specifically for you.
Continue a cycle of reading, reflecting, and reciting God’s Word. Your soul will feel refreshed and alive. Bill Gothard, author of Our Jealous God, suggests memorizing verses of Scripture and then mulling them over as you lie in bed at the end of the day. Putting yourself to sleep with God’s Word on your tongue will have you waking up with a surprisingly sweet taste in your mouth.
Earthly treasure may offer wealth but can do little to wash away worry or provide comfort during trouble. Seek God with your whole heart. Peruse your “map” with intensity. Develop diligence during your daily study. Make memorizing God’s Word a priority. Before you know it, a fortune of God’s favor will be yours.
Read more articles by Pamela Rosario or search for articles on the same topic or others.