Treasures of Darkness

“I will give you the treasures of darkness And hidden wealth of secret places, So that you may know that it is I, The LORD, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name.” – Yahweh to Cyrus in Isaiah 45:3

For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. – Colossians 3:3-4

For I want you to know how great a struggle I have on your behalf and for those who are at Laodicea, and for all those who have not personally seen my face, that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. – Colossians 2:1-3

These verses came to mind this morning during worship in church. Specifically the phrase, “treasures of darkness.”

A woman won a large lottery jackpot after buying a ticket in one of my accounts in Shallotte, NC, earlier this week. She won something like $188 million. Of course it prompted conversations in our household of what we would do with such a sum of money. Jessica asked what I would buy. I said, “There’s nothing I want that can be purchased with money.” Of course we struggle financially and our house in Delaware is in foreclosure having failed to sell after almost a year. We would spend some money purchasing a house and land here in NC and pay off our debts. But there’s really nothing I want except truth in the inward parts. Money can’t buy that.

Precious pearl of great price. Treasure buried in a field. The hidden treasure, hidden wealth of secret places. A concealed, hidden Christ, in whom I reside, awaiting the glory that will be revealed.

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Faithful Steward

February 14, 2015, Saturday, 9:04 PM.

I haven’t been feeling well this weekend. Had a bout with diarrhea and upset stomach while Jess went to a Valentine’s dinner at the church last night, and today I’ve been sipping Pepto Bismol and watching MASH and music videos.

A few weeks ago a lady at church said she was praying for me — knowing I was to speak that morning — and heard the words, “faithful steward” as she was in prayer. She said I was a faithful steward of the Word of God. I’m not sure if it’s true right now, but it is certainly my heart’s desire. Throughout my life I have felt imbalanced and sick, and as I have observed in the churches I know that I am not alone.

I’ve been listening to a radio station called Old Paths Radio here in NC. It’s mostly a bunch of Baptist preachers, many of whom sound like they’ve been gargling gravel, they’ve shouted themselves so hoarse screaming salvation. But there isn’t really much teaching. There aren’t many teachers in the Body of Christ, people who actually talk about how we should live, about how the kingdom of God finds root and expression right now in this life.

I ride around in my work car and tell the Lord I’d like to be used and to bring me into His purpose. It’s in my heart — in germ form — to write a book to help people, to help Christians who, like me, are struggling. But a thing like that can never happen apart from His intervention because I lack discipline. A thing like that requires a commitment, a setting aside of daily time and effort to give something.

But first I have to receive.

Father I need to hear from You. The desire is there. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. The desire is not the same as doing. I don’t want to just do. I want to be a witness. But I also want to DO. Faith without works is dead. I feel sick and tired and empty because I am not disciplined enough to turn off the television at the end of the workday and on the weekend. The little foxes are spoiling the vine. I want to be a faithful steward.

Resisting Life

Monday morning, February 2nd, 2015. 5:20 AM.

I am making a quick post because this past week was strange and I feel as if I have “cooled off” spiritually. I spent a lot of time thinking about Firefly — wanting to go and peevish that I can’t — and disappointed with our sex life and just generally discontented. Watched a lot of television and didn’t pray or read the Word much. Ate a lot of sugary stuff. Now feeling empty, bored, tired.

I was thinking yesterday about an idea John Wright Follette expressed in his work This Wonderful Venture Called Christian Living, about how we are always trying to do anything but live. Anytime I start thinking about where I’d rather be, or what I’d rather be doing, or how life would be better if this or that happened, I am resisting life. Resisting actual living in God’s timing and purpose in favor of an empty longing or fantasy. I am not finding comfort or closeness in the Kingdom of God, but in loving the things of the world which are always dissatisfying and ultimately doomed to destruction.

Father, it is time for me to learn the fear of the Lord. It’s been a long time. You’ve been patient and merciful. I need help. I need Your help so I can fulfill whatever You had in mind when you called Me. I need a Savior. I cannot save myself. I cannot make myself better or more worthy. Eternity now.