X marks the spot

X marks the spot on the treasure map where the treasure lays hidden.

As I finished Equipping for Ministry (almost four years ago) it was suggested that I might look to the future and write my own story, which might include a treasure map, shipmates, a tool kit, treasure, dragons, and possibly other features too.

I identified my treasure as the Love of God, which is here and now, and doesn’t actually need seeking for. Someone else in the group said, when we shared our stories, that the treasure was for sharing with everybody. I liked that idea and it fitted the treasure I was identifying.

treasure map

I drew a map too, and the islands that I identified, where I might land and meet friendly people (Becoming Friends, Watford Interfaith Association, Quaker Quest), have been visited.

I was quite fascinated by the dragons I drew, that lurked around the map (as they do on some antiquarian maps). I named them ‘fear’, ‘my agenda’ and ‘the rut’. I hoped to tame ‘my agenda’ and re-direct its energies constructively. I hoped not to get dragged down by ‘the rut’.


Now I come to a place in my journey where the map has run out. I’m not sure whether my path is blocked by a log I might sit and rest on, and perhaps, in due course, climb over to continue my journey. Or by red & white danger warning tape saying stop, here, now, do not continue this way. I’m seeing gentle countryside around me, rather than seas and islands to explore. A time to take stock and review. Perhaps a time ‘to make your home a place of loving friendship and enjoyment, where all who live or visit may find the peace and refreshment of God’s presence.’ (A&Q 26), to wait, to let people come to me, rather than rush around going to this meeting and that meeting.


What does your map look like? Do you see adventures? Dragons? Shipmates? Treasure?

4 thoughts on “X marks the spot

  1. Thanks for sharing your map Stephanie. Coming to a place of waiting like your log reminds me of this quotation from John Woolman which is part of the inspiration for the title of my own blog, ‘From stumbling blocks to stepping stones.’
    ‘I have gone forward, not as one travelling in a road cast up, and well prepared, but as a man walking in a miry place, in which there are stones here and there, safe to step on, but so situated that one step being taken, time is necessary to see where to step next.’

  2. I’m walking through a wood, following word-of-mouth directions from several people which sometimes contradict. I can hear a massive rushing river in the distance, sometimes I see it, and I know I’ll eventually have to cross it; I’ve been told that there may be a bridge or even a ford if I go far enough, and I know that some people have crossed before me, but others have never been seen again or only reappeared months later in other places entirely. Rumour suggests that trolls, once living happily under the bridges, have begun to pull them down, and so my chances of finding one are increasingly slim.

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