Friday, April 16, 2010

Living Water


When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?"  (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)
The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)
Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."
"Sir," the woman said, "you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?"
Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."  John 4:7-14

This is one of my favorite passages in the NT.  Living water...easy enough concept because we need water to survive, but think for a moment of other things water can do for us.  Water can help keep us healthy, wash away dirt, hold us up (think of floating), and fill us.  Jesus, source of living water, does the same things for His children.  Consider... 
Jesus' healing power ~
Luke 4:40, "When the sun was setting, the people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying his hands on each one, he healed them."
James 5:14-15 "Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven."  
Jesus' cleansing power ~
Hebrews 9:14 "How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!"   
1 John 1:9 (KJV) "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
Jesus' holding power ~
Colossians 1:17 "He is before all things, and in him all things hold together."
Jesus' filling power ~
Philippians 1:9-11 "And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God."

I thank God for the blessings of family, friends, and things that make life fun and exciting, but my life is truly full only when I allow the Living Water to come and complete me.  When my focus turns to other things to find fulfillment, an emptiness ensues...an emptiness that only God can satisfy.  I am so thankful that God led me to read this passage this morning...it has been a great reminder and source of encouragement to read of His power in and over all things.          

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

true love

"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul." Psalm 143:8


Just yesterday, I read this verse and as if in a whisper within my heart, I prayed that I would sense God's love for me in a new way.  And, as only God can do, He did just that.  This very morning, our ladies' Bible study topic was God's love.  This post would be neverending if I could put into words all that God did to refresh my spirit in just an hour's time.  
One thing, though, that Beth Moore said, based on 1 John 4:7-19 (hmm...sounds familiar), is that love is God's "is-ness".  I think that is just hilarious, but so profound at the same time.  He is love.  In order for me to give and receive true love, it first comes from God.  I must abide in Him and He in me for love to flow out of my heart.  
I then wondered, if asked to fill in this blank..."Janet is ______."...what would people say?  What do people think my "is-ness" is?  That's a dangerous question to ask, knowing full well of my weaknesses and failures in day to day living.  It's comforting to know that no matter what "is-ness" I'm portraying, that love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8).  By God's loving act of giving His only Son to die for my sins, he covers me and my failures at trying to meet the standards for living a life pleasing to Him. 
Another thing that spoke to my heart is that God wants the firstfruits of my love.  My choicest love must be given to Him.  Before I can truly love anyone else, my priority is to love Him the most.  Notice the order of the two most important commandments according to Mark 12:29-31. "The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these." Only after we love God, are able to love each other.
This has been an ongoing lesson in my life since Alaska '08...God helped me to realize that He is the source from which I get everything I need.  (Matthew 6:33; 2 Peter 1:3)  If He's not first, I'm not my best...and because I am imperfect even at my best, I am still prone to fail.  Praise God for His love that covers me!

Saturday, April 10, 2010