The Treasure is in the Water


What hinders you from spending time alone with Jesus? It’s wonderful to hear what others have to say about scriptural passages they have studied, but it’s really amazing to dive in ourselves!

My husband and I had saved for a year to go snorkeling. With all the sacrifices we had made, I couldn’t believe we were finally on the white sandy shore. Confidently, I grabbed my gear and prepared to jump into the clear blue water.

But it wasn’t like I had imagined. The mask felt funny once I got it on; how was I supposed to breathe? My heart fluttered as my anxiety grew.

My mind screamed, Dive in! Get out there. This is an opportunity of a lifetime! But my feet stayed planted on dry ground. Though Greg called out to with me, even came and took my hand to give me courage, I never left the rocky shore.

Twenty years later, my chance came again. Starting a few months before the trip, I gave myself a talking-to. Go for it, Lynn! It will be worth it. Just dive in and don’t look back! This message helped me when the day came to wade into the ocean.

My heart began pounding again, but I kept going. Encouraging voices beckoned me to come farther out where the schools of rainbow-colored fish swam. Holding my breath, I peeked under the water, shocked to see the cobalt blue and golden yellow creations. I even swam with a sea turtle! Before I knew it, an hour had passed.

Did I want to quit? Some moments I did, as anxiety tried to force it’s way in. I had to remind myself of all I was gaining staying in the sea.

There was a time when I avoided “diving” deeper into Scripture. My schedule always short on time. Intimidated by stories I didn’t understand and challenges that made me feel “less than” I found it easier to read what someone else had to say about God’s word. Like that young woman on the rocky shore so many years ago, I knew I was missing out by not going deeper.

When I became part of a leadership team at my church, I had to take the plunge. The group’s accountability helped me be consistent in reading and studying the Bible. The daily homework navigated me as I learned to go below the surface. I found I loved it!

When we study God’s Word, He reveals who He is and His plans and heart for us. Exploring verses and how the Bible ties together is a gold mine. See how David put it: “I rejoice in your word like one who discovers a great treasure” (Psalm 119:162).

It was one thing to hear my husband’s experience of snorkeling 20 years ago when I waited on the shore. But, his stories came to life when I dipped my head under water and discovered for myself the beautiful coral, shimmering fish and vibrant colors.

In the same way, it’s wonderful to hear what others have to say about Scriptures they have studied, to listen to sermons or to read books. But it’s really amazing to dive in ourselves. Studying God’s Word opens our eyes, heart and mind to learn from Him about His ways, His will and His direction for us. So go ahead, take the plunge. What are you waiting for?

Take a moment to ask yourself: What hinders you from spending time alone with Jesus?

Pray this prayer, asking for the Lord’s help: Lord, the only thing holding me back from discovering the depths in Your Word is me. Empower me to be disciplined and help me to hear Your voice as I study Your Word. Amen.

Written by Lynn Cowell

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