A more reasonable estimate of human costs and values will lead us to think that no labour is better expended than that which explores the way to the treasure-houses of the spirit, and shows mankind where to find those goods which are increased by being shared, and which none can take from us. - William Inge
Author Dallas Willard references this quotation in the opening chapter of his book The Spirit of the Disciplines. The majority of Christians live life ‘catching God on the run’; that is to say, in the midst of the day to day busy-ness of normal life. The problem is that such an approach will invariably result in missing the ‘treasure-houses of the spirit’.
Paul wrote that the Holy Spirit ‘searches all things, even the deep things of God’ (1 Cor. 2:10). I am not satisfied with only knowing the introductory things of God; I want to know the deep things of God. This is not some form of impractical contemporary mysticism. Quite the contrary! Even a cursory reading of the New Testament will show that the apostles deeply desired that the church would grow in their revelation (living understanding) of the deep things of God.
Prayer is one of the most significant pathways toward the ‘treasure-houses of the spirit’. I love that phrase because it creates excitement in me to search out the treasures of God. In my previous post, I wrote about the importance of developing and using a personal prayer list. Why? Because only a conscious, long-term, disciplined approach to spiritual growth will result in encountering those divine treasure-houses. Obviously a prayer list is only a tool to aid in prayer and prayer is only one facet of spiritual growth. However my point is that we will not simply stumble into the ‘divine treasure-houses’ that are available to us. There may be some exception here or there but as a rule, the majority of believers will miss out on what the apostle Paul described as ‘glorious riches’ that really could be ours if we would but pursue them diligently!
I urge you to give careful consideration to what you want most in life. David wrote of God: “You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” (Ps. 16:11) I want to encounter the God who will give ‘eternal pleasures’ to those who will have the vision to lay things aside in order to come and labor and search for them!
What are you laboring after in this life?
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