Pika’s Treasure—What About Mine?
Seated in the warm sunshine on top of a large boulder, I view a peaceful, alpine lake. The lofty heights of Mt. Jefferson (10,497 ft) rise in majestic splendor above the tree line in the Cascade mountains. In the stillness, broken only by an occasional song from the birds, I lay up the treasures on God’s Word in my heart, and share them with some special friends through writing letters.
Suddenly, I am startled from my thoughts by hearing a high pitched, “Peep! Peep! Peep!” Looking around, I spot my little, fury friend, a pika, sitting on top of a nearby boulder. A few moments later, the pika disappears under the boulder. But wait! There he is! On top of that boulder, under another, around another, over another, across a little sand… he stops! Quickly he gathers a big mouthful of plant greens and ferns growing by a small rock. Then he hastily makes his way back to his home, up and over, under and around the boulders. I sit there, silent and amazed, intently watching the little creature. Again and again the little pika makes these hasty journeys. He gathers such big loads of plants that I wonder how he manages to carry them. He moves so quickly and across such uneven surfaces, not losing even a leaf. He seems to be in a hurry-scurry, as if snow is coming tomorrow. Storing up the treasure of food is his all-absorbing activity.
Are we this earnest in laying up treasure of the Bread of Life, the Word of Life, in our hearts? Says the Psalmist, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” (Psalm 119:11) Another one of my favorite verses of instruction and promise is found in Job 22:21-22: “Acquaint now thyself with him, and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee. Receive, I pray thee, the law from his mouth, and lay up his words in thine heart.”
Just as enthusiastically as the little pika was storing up the treasure of food, let us acquaint ourselves with Jesus, our Best Friend! He loves to have us lay up the treasures of His Word in our hearts, for He knows that thereby good shall come unto us. We will have peace, too, as we surrender our hearts to obey His Word! It is vitally important that we daily spend time in God’s Word for our spiritual food. We wouldn’t think of saying, “I just don’t have time to eat today!” But how many times do we say this about God’s Word?
The best part of my day is my time with my Best Friend in prayer and in His Word! What wonderful treasures He gives me every day as I dig for them and hide them in my heart! One way I enjoy hiding them in my heart is through Scripture songs. I have also found it especially helpful in my experience to ask the Lord to make me so sensitive to holy influences, that the lightest whisper of Jesus will move my soul to do His will. He will bring back His Words to our minds when the snows of temptation fly our way. If we listen to His still, small voice, we will hear Him reminding us to stay surrendered to Him. Isn’t He wonderful? He has taught the little pika to prepare for the winter snow storms soon to come upon him. He wants us to be prepared, too! He will keep us from falling! So let’s treasure up His Words in our hearts now!
The day is sunny and warm. After my noon quiet time with Jesus, I gather my books so I can go outside and complete my studies for homeschool. As I gather them up, the calendar hanging on my cupboard door falls down and the tack disappears. Laying down my armload of books, I begin looking for the tack. I can’t find it right away, and I am being tempted to get irritated. Finally, I find it and hang the calendar up. I pick up my books, then remember that I’ve forgotten my notebook. I open the cupboard door, and guess what? Down goes the calendar again!! Now I am really being tempted with irritation, but the Lord is calling for my heart, saying, “My daughter, give Me thine heart” (Proverbs 23:26). As I realize the voice of my Savior and His Words come to my mind, I immediately make a decision and say, “Lord I give my heart now.” “Not my will, but thine, be done.” (Luke 22:42) With peace in my heart, I hang up the calendar again and go outside.
This isn’t the end of my trials for the day, though. Thursday afternoons my mother and I usually clean the house. But today it is so sunny and warm! I don’t want to come in and clean house. Coming in anyway, I begin dusting. Again the Holy Spirit’s still, small voice is calling my heart to cheerful submission. He reminds me about the song of Isaiah 53 that I earlier treasured in my heart. As I choose to begin singing this song, I realize that it has a message for me! Truly Jesus suffered much more than just cleaning house on a sunny day!
With this song in my heart, I cheerfully finish dusting. I begin cleaning the bathroom. Interrupting the song, my thoughts start drifting off to a situation with two of my good friends just the prior weekend. Self wants to justify my position and dwell on how their attitude toward me did not seem right. But the Holy Spirit is also whispering in my ear, “ ‘This is the way, walk ye in it’ (Isaiah 30:21)! Remember the verse you read in your devotions this morning from 1 Peter 5:5, ‘Be ye clothed with humility: for God giveth grace to the humble.’ This experience is to perfect in your life the sweet grace of humility. Think about how you can do your friends good.”
It is a struggle! Self doesn’t die easily! But as I give these thoughts to the Lord, He brings to my mind a way in which I can do them good. Then I go on singing Isaiah 53.
May we let our hearts be impressed with the important words of that chapter, and ever bear them in mind. Thus we will not so easily fall into temptation and our words would be few and well chosen.
Let’s be like little pika and lay up treasures of God’s Word in our hearts! All its strength is ours! His victory is ours!
Lisa Panasuk, 20 (18 when she wrote this article), lives in Silverton, OR. She has been homeschooled all her life and enjoys working with plants in her greenhouse, caring for their sheep, and helping her mother with household duties.