Advent gives us riches, stored in secret places
‘I will give you….riches stored in secret places’.
This verse from Isaiah, pledging hidden riches, was written at the end of the exile, a time of homecoming. God assures his people, not just of a new home, but of one which is thrilling beyond expectations, where treasures are waiting to be discovered. He who created our vast universe, who turned water into wine in lavish profusion, has an infinity of treasure stored up which, if we are patient, he will reveal to us. Who, for example, would have thought of looking for the riches of the Incarnation, Emmanuel, God-with-us, in the back yard of a pub in Bethlehem where animals were stabled? God’s wealth concealed in poverty and ordinariness.
But patience is the key. These treasures are not wide open to the world. They are in secret places, and we need to make time if we are to discover them. We need to wait, our minds alert and uncluttered, until God shows us His hiding place. Rather like Simeon, ‘who watched and waited’ for a revelation of the Lord’s Messiah.
Besides waiting, there is remembering. ‘Counting your blessings’, as the saying goes. When we dwell on the riches we have already been granted, and recognized all God has provided for us, we are filled with wonder. We are not worthy, and yet we have received unsearchable riches, pouring forth as light from the sun.
These words come from “Sayings For Stillness”, a publication by the Fellowship of Contemplative Prayer (FCP). The Fellowship encourages us to take time out of our busy days to contemplate the Word of God, to be still and alert, to be aware of Christ in the world.