As a young girl growing up in Durango, Colorado, I had many perks. But my favorite included the fun adventure of traveling in our little green Jeep to the top of mountains to locate abandoned mining camps. Once my family discovered one, we would pour out onto the dusty roads to begin our scavenging. We found many treasures while digging on the side of mountains, canvassing empty cabins, and scouring ravines.
This love of antiques continues in our family today. My parents are experts in buying and selling artifacts from days gone by. Recently, I heralded my tales of going “junking” at flea markets. But my audience simply stared at me as if I were an alien, and one replied, “With our modern conveniences and snappy décor, who would want that old stuff?” As a lover of history, I peered at them as if they were the crazy ones.
A similar experience occurred in relation to God’s Word. During a lunchtime conversation, someone asked me my favorite book of the Bible. When I answered Isaiah, her nose crinkled and she spat out the words, “Who wants to read the Old Testament when we have the New Testament? It doesn’t apply anymore.” My heart skipped a beat as I thought about how she was overlooking some of the greatest treasures tucked between the pages.
Her remark immediately caused me to head home with rapid pace to peruse my Bible for my favorite Old Testament nuggets. I’d like to share a few of them with you. The Old Testament is where we:
- experience the names of God such as El Roi, Jehovah Rapha, and El Shaddai.
- learn about faith from the lives of Noah, Abraham, and Daniel.
- let our heart soar through the promises tucked into Psalms.
- understand God’s deep love for us in the stories of Ruth or Hosea.
- witness God’s strength and protection as Gideon and David defeat enemies with only a few men or a stone.
Or bask in my beloved verse:
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.
This week I had a friend who experienced a devastating loss, one that I can’t imagine having to endure. As my heart ached and tears pooled in my eyes, the Habakkuk verse surfaced in my mind and became comfort to the heaviness that plagued me. I prayed that my sister in Christ would cling to these words spoken by a man who himself had experienced great loss.
The Old Testament is alive! My friends, it’s time to uncover and discover. Go treasure hunting; you’ll find some good ones between Genesis and Malachi.