Rivers of Living Water: Christ in Us
IT’S WORTH CONSIDERING
It was during the seven-day Feast of Tabernacles that Jesus proclaimed, “If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water'”(John 7:37-38). He was telling the world that He alone was the source of life and blessing, for that day and forever. During each day of this feast, the high priest of Israel, along with tens of thousands of worshipers, walked in procession from the Temple Mount to the pool of Siloam. There, he filled a pitcher with water and continued by a different route back to the Temple Mount. Here, he ceremonially poured the water onto the altar, asking God to provide the life-giving water so urgently needed to end the normal summer drought.
Jesus used the occasion to highlight the living water He was offering. To grasp His meaning, it is necessary to consider the nature of a river. It is a force to be reckoned with. It goes wherever it desires, overcoming everything in its path. It finds a way over or around every obstacle in its way. Its source knows nothing about where it will go, the places it will touch. Similarly, the Spirit of God Jesus was referring to overcomes every obstacle. Just as a river responds to the immutable law of gravity, the Spirit of God responds to the immutable laws of the Living God. Think of the mightiest river you have ever seen (or imagined). Now imagine that the spiritual version of that river is flowing through you.
This is the picture Jesus wants to paint in our minds. We have no control over where that river will go. Our job is to stay so connected to the source that the flow is never interrupted. As long as the river is flowing, it will ultimately overcome every obstacle. God’s purpose and plan is that the river of living water flowing through us would reach many others, blessing them with life and light, regardless of the obstacles in the way.
AS I SEE IT
A few real life examples of this principle come to mind. As the Nile and Mississippi rivers flow into the sea, the mouths of the rivers form very fertile deltas as they deposit the nutrients they have collected along the way. On the other hand, the Dead Sea has no outlet. It takes in but releases nothing. Consequently, nothing grows there. Then there’s the issue of obstacles-formidable obstacles-like a dam. A dam can turn a river into a reservoir. Add a hydro-electric plant to the dam and you’ve turned the potential energy into kinetic energy, providing electrical power to the entire region.
That’s the business Jesus is in-providing life and light, and He has chosen to accomplish this through us. If we stay connected to the source, Him, He will send rivers of living water through us, and He will use every apparent obstacle to accomplish His purpose. We must be careful not to divert His spiritual rivers for our own use, irrigating our own fields at the expense of others. This will surely stop the flow altogether until we reconnect properly. We need to try to see things from God’s perspective instead of our own, so we will better understand what He is attempting to do through us. When we do, we can expect those rivers of living water to yield fruit beyond anything we could imagine.
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River image by Art4TheGlryOfGod Photography by Sharon
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