Joy of Discovery

If I’m out walking, and as I travel along, I notice something by the side of the road. I think, Wow, a valuable treasure, on the ground and I pick it up. I say, “Oh, boy, I just found a treasure!” I run back to my friends to show them my treasure.
(Go over to an attendee who has shown bravery in responding to earlier workshop questions and say, “Here. I want to share some of this treasure I just found.” If I hand it off to you, would you be happy if I gave you and shared part of my treasure with you? ‘Yes.’ the person will nod and say.

Yes, you would be happy if gave you part of my treasure, right?”

But, I also can do this. Tug the sleeve of the person you handed part of your treasure to earlier. “Here. Come with me. I want to show you something; just let’s take a walk.” And I take you on the same road where I was, and the treasure is still left along the side… (I draw the person closer to the spot where I found the treasure and say,) “Do you see anything interesting? Do you see anything there?” As we draw closer, when that person looks down and sees the pretend treasure, encourage the person to lean over and pick up the pretend treasure. Say to the volunteer, “Oh look!”

Most of the time the volunteers will figure out that they are supposed to discover a treasure so they will delightedly reach down and pick up the discovered treasure. (If the person you selected does not understand his part in the unplanned drama, whisper to him, ‘pick up the pretend treasure and act like you are be happy.’)

Now ask the volunteer, “Did you enjoy the treasure the first time when I just handed it to you?
Yes,’ the person will say or nod in agreement.
Good! But how did you enjoy the treasure when you discovered it yourself?

(Usually the person will say “I liked it better when I discovered it myself.’ You’re right. It’s better to find it yourself. It’s the joy of discovery you experience when you are a part of discovering the treasure. Being given a treasure has value for sure, but when it was not just handed off to you, when you discovered it for yourself it had the most value.”

Besides lecturing and handing people truths and insights from the Bible, you can also through well thought out questions allow people to discover truths for themselves.

NOTE: When you do this illustration, DO NOT use a real object as a treasure. People will be distracted by what you select and will not listen well to the whole illustration. If you are acting thrilled over some rocks or a water bottle, it becomes silly. Better to show how excited you are at finding an imaginary treasure, and people will then imagine in their own minds something that to them is a valuable treasure. {Make sure that you as an instructor or your volunteer does is not wearing clothing that becomes immodest when leaning over to pick up the treasure!)

The “Joy of Discovery,” shows the difference between two ways of sharing biblical information. It can be given through preaching and lecture which is giving, giving, giving people information, that they will like it and they will appreciate. But if some how you involve learners in the pursuit of information, and lead them through questions to be able to discover it for themselves, the new information becomes much more valuable to the discoverer. Learners will remember when they had that “Ah ha!” moment, and they figured it out as well. As well, the most joy and the strongest impact in learning from Scripture is when people have the experience of discovering for themselves.