Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Panning For Gold

Most people love gold. But do they love it because it is shiny and sparkles in the sun, or because it is rare? If gold were as plentiful as rose petals or as common as rain would people put less stock in it? Snowflakes are lovely and intricate. So are flowers and sunsets. These are fragile, elusive and free. Even if you could hold them in your hand, it would be fleeting. Gold has weight and lasts virtually forever. Lesser metals like silver, copper and iron are weighty, too. Why is gold so prized?

Gold is the stuff of myth, of King Midas and of Saint Nicholas. They say that in heaven the streets are paved in gold. I wonder what we'll think then? Will we prize it as we do now? It will still be beautiful, but there will be Someone, a Presence, that far outshines the gold for beauty or the color for warmth. No, I believe earth is the place for our fascination with this substance that seems to absorb and then reflect the sun.

I like to wear gold jewelry in winter when all outside is cold and gray. It burnishes against winter's hues of purple, forest, navy, and red. Just to wear a small amount of it pleases me more than to be decked in several less valued items.

Gold can be found in rushing streams. When you pan for gold, you stand in the force of life and scoop up a tray full of pebbles, water, and silt. You take the time to sift and search for the treasure.

Gold isn't always easy to see. Sometimes you have to get in the muck and feel around till you find it. Those who search for it may pan for many hours or days to find even one nugget. When they find it, they look in the same place again. Good things like that tend to cluster together. You must find the outcropping,the vein.

There's always the chance that what you found isn't gold at all but fool's gold. It is important to take it to a higher authority and see if it has any value. Many people are confused by this substance. They gather it for a long time before having its value tested.

This is the idea I want to explore for myself. What is real and what is false? In what ways can I be sure of the high quality and how avoid the other? In as many ways as possible, I want to go where life is and start panning. I want to keep scooping and searching, always taking my findings to the assayer. I will keep the precious few nuggets in my sack, cherishing them, using them and always seeking out more of that pure gold.


  1. What a great post! I love the way you mention taking what we find to a higher authority. That is so true.

  2. I love this. Yes, may we always search for the truth and when we question authenticity let us take it to our Higher Authority through prayer and reflection:)

  3. I like the idea of not settling for Fool's gold when we can have the real thing. My Bible is right there with the answers. I don't need secular input on everything.

  4. I'm reminded of the scripture that says to store up treasure in heaven where moth and rust do not corrupt. Someone once said, "There are no luggage carriers on a hearse."

    Susan :)

  5. This is as beautiful as your heart. I'm a gold girl, too... :)

  6. Awesome analogy! I've wondered about the lure of Gold too.
    Love the story in the NT about selling all we have to search for that pearl of great price (Jesus).
    I know it's not gold, but that's what I think of. Giving up everything for what's real and valuable. :-)
    Thanks for the reminder that I should keep sifting my life.

  7. Beautifully written! I've watched the search for gold on TV shows...it's one of those things where you have to have patience and believe that you WILL find something, although it may seem at times you won't.

  8. Good post! I'm beginning to wonder if I don't know the difference either between the real and fake and I have been chasing after the wrong stuff.

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