We heat our house with a wood burning stove, so that means that we have to keep a supply of fire wood on hand. It’s also means that we have to do a fair amount of splitting (we own a gas powered-splitter, by the way) and stacking wood too. So, last week, Clif and I spent one evening stacking and storing the last load of firewood for next winter. But I’m not as young as a used to be so when we were finished, I was tired! So I went directly to the kitchen for a couple of tall glasses of water. And once the last cup was drained, I started to feel better. Refreshed and recharged!
A basic biology class will remind you that our bodies are made up of around 60% water. For individual organs, the percentage can be higher putting water composition of your brain and heart at 73%, lungs at about 83%. muscles and kidneys at around 79%, and even something as dense as bone still has more water than you might expect (30%) All those mildly interesting facts just remind us how necessary water is to sustain life.
You know, Jesus applied that reality to the spiritual realm and in his conversation with the woman at the well, went so far as to describe His followers as having “rivers of living water (flowing) from within them.” (John 7:38) And mostly, I like that description. I enjoy imagining what it would be like to have an unending supply of peace, love, joy, contentment … LIFE gushing forth in abundance. But often my reality doesn’t really resemble a plentiful flow. There are days when things seem more like a dry river bed or a slowing moving tributary rather than a fast-flowing river of sustenance. Oh sure, there are times of surplus, but they don’t seem to last for long enough and then the parched land underneath seems to beg for more refreshment.
But an image of lack and sparseness isn’t the picture Jesus painted for us. His gifts to us aren’t stingy or miserly, but instead He promises full, overflowing excessive bounty. When He described life with Him as full and overflowing, that’s exactly what He meant.
So, what if instead of doubting Christ’s words or dismissing them as tired metaphors, we, as His children, really began to believe that abundance is provided?
What if we looked for ‘rivers of living water’ to manifest themselves and actively began to remove obstructions to the flow of what is ours in Christ?
What if we trusted the Spirit within us to produce what we cannot do ourselves and boldly gave ourselves to be used as He wills?
Could we then actually begin to live lives of refreshment, drawn from the inexhaustible well of the life of God?
Maybe it’s time for us to stop evaluating ourselves based on what we see in our circumstances and trusting what we feel in our emotions and start to actively live out of what is promised to us by our supernatural Savior.
Only then will we see our lives changes, families impacted, and become useful for making His way “known on the earth, and (His) salvation among all nations. (Ps 67:2)