Earlier today, I posted about Ezekiel 47:1-12, a story about a river the prophet saw coming out from the temple, the very place God was said to dwell on earth. Everywhere that river flowed, from Jerusalem to the Dead Sea, life sprang up where it hadn’t been before. If you missed it, check it our here.
At the end of that post, I posed three questions and asked you to consider them, they are: What is God telling us in this vision about His presence? What is God telling us about the source of life? Do the words “living water” come to mind when you consider these things?
Did you get a chance to think about them?
Here’s how it struck me: This story comes from a prophetic vision, not a historical event and so we ought to take it that way. Water flowed from God’s presence that brought life to the desert, and made the Dead Sea come alive with life, so powerful was this water of life. Jesus said that He would give us “living water” and that anyone who drank of it would never thirst again. This life-giving water comes from God’s presence; hold that thought.
We have been commanded to share God’s love with others, to spread the gospel, to minister to one another and with those in need, and yet what do I have that will do any good? Well, I can say something nice and encouraging, and I am sometimes pretty good at that, but talk is hardly enough. I do, however, have something from God, something that can only come from His presence, and when that life-source overflows in me, I have something of value to share. If life-giving water comes from God’s presence, as in the story from Ezekiel 47, then it would only be logical that I should drink deeply of this water, wouldn’t you agree? If I drink deeply enough, I will have extra to share, and from that overflow, I can share with others something of value, something that brings life to them.
The only thing we really have to share with others in love, is the overflow from our own relationship with Jesus Christ. Otherwise, I have only myself to share, and I cannot give life or bring healing on my own. Thus, it seems to me that each of us needs to drink deeply from our relationships with Him, so that we will have enough of Him and His love to share with those around us. We will never have anything to share if we neglect our relationships with Him!
We live in times that are busy, hurried and sometimes stressful, and for a great many, there is simply no time for our relationship with Jesus… and so what have we to share? You probably hear this all the time from Christians; they are too busy, they don’t have time, and besides if they were to share, they wouldn’t know what to say or do, and they are probably right. We’ll only know what to say or share or do if we have an overflow from our own relationship with Jesus, but then who has time for that?
The result, of course is that most of us who should be sharing Christ’s love with those around us, need help ourselves.
The answer to this problem isn’t complicated; slow down and take a drink. Drink deeply the water of life that comes from being in God’s presence. If you can’t find the time, then make the time. When you do, I have no doubt that everything in your life will start to go more smoothly, relationships, jobs, hassles… and sharing will become second nature.