Friday, May 24, 2013

The Mayapple is Like a Hidden Treasure (Proverbs 2:1-5)

Proverbs 2:1-5 (NASB):
1 My son, if you will receive my words and treasure my commandments within you,
2 Make your ear attentive to wisdom, incline your heart to understanding;
3 For if you cry for discernment, lift your voice for understanding;
4 If you seek her as silver and search for her as for hidden treasures;
5 Then you will discern the fear of the LORD and discover the knowledge of God.

The search for wisdom is like the search for hidden treasure. It is like the sudden discovery of the treasures of the Mayapple (Podophyllum peltatum), a plant of the forest that looks somewhat like an umbrella. Many will pass this beauty by, and some will find the secret it beholds.

In our Gethsemane Prayer Garden, we have a section of Mayapple that grows under the tall canopy of some black willow trees. Other flowers such as astilbe, vinca minor, hosta, and bush clover are also planted in this area. It is a refreshing and relaxing spot, somewhat secluded from the rest of the garden. This location was selected to preserve the May apples that have been growing there many years before this prayer garden was ever conceived.

Sitting above this peaceful area is a wooden bench where one's mind can wander away from the fast activity of life. The Scripture above states, "Make your ear attentive", and "incline your heart", and "cry for discernment", and "lift your voice", and "seek … and search", then you will "discern … and discover".

Most people do not know the flower is there although some will hear about it from someone else. We do not normally find it because we are not looking for it. Yet an attitude of diligently seeking allows us to uncover hidden treasures such as the Mayapple. It is an attitude that says, "Lord, I want all you have for me."

I believe that the wisdom described in Proverbs 2:1-5 is supernatural wisdom. To me, it is not what is generated from the intelligence of our minds, but rather it is what is given by our Lord. It is a gift from our most generous and loving God.

Many people have heard about the gifts of the Holy Spirit; some reject it with steadfast authority, some seek it but do not discern anything unusual or different, and some receive it as the hidden treasure that God intended.

I am convinced that finding and then opening this gift is because of the attitude we have in approaching the Holy Spirit. Yes there is certainly the aspect that it is hidden, but there is also the aspect of sudden discovery that is far more beautiful, wonderful, and powerful than one would have expected.

Proverbs 2:6-11 (NASB):
6 For the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.
7 He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity,
8 Guarding the paths of justice, and He preserves the way of His godly ones.
9 Then you will discern righteousness and justice and equity and every good course.
10 For wisdom will enter your heart and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
11 Discretion will guard you, understanding will watch over you.