Sally Bair | Eternal Perspectives
One spring my son and I canoed down the upper Cloquet river north of Duluth, Minnesota. At some points the river had flooded to nearly half a mile wide. No one else was brave enough to confront the fast-moving water. Though far from calm, the water’s peaceful flow managed to fill our spirits.
Spring runoff always begins humbly by forming puddles that run under leftover snowbanks, then along ditches and then through culverts, until overflowing creek beds and rivers. The speed of spring runoff is amazing. Slow-moving trickles join each other, then move toward bigger streams that become fast-flowing rivers and eventually reach oceans. Such runoff helps sustain our planet with life. It carries with it a whole winter of dirt and grime and debris and plant litter. Spring rains and runoff bring life to emerging buds and shoots.
The sound of flowing water is music to our winter-weary, thirsty senses. It nourishes our soul and spirit. It brings hope of new life to us after enduring weeks of cold and snow and ice. In fact, God’s Spirit is referred to as living water. He removes the debris from our lives, sins kept hidden under cold winter snows, when we choose to allow his cleansing. He sustains us when we travel rough, uphill roads of life. And he helps us cling to Jesus, the bread of life, so we can bear the fruit of his love, joy and peace for his kingdom.
Uncontrolled spring runoff may require attention. So does the flow of God’s living water. We may be spiritually thirsty but too unaware, too busy or too distrusting to ask for much. We may be satisfied with a gentle trickle of his love and mercy, enough to keep us comfortably filled but not enough to give us the strength and power we need to face life’s obstacles.
God’s Spirit can come to us in a flood like spring runoff, if we allow it. God’s word, presence and power will wash away our sins and give us much-needed strength, sustenance and healing. It will spill over into the lives of those around us, for their healing of body, soul and spirit, as well.
Lord, thank you for giving us the living water of your love and salvation, your freedom from sin, your righteousness, peace and joy. Cause us to thirst after you and be like a spring runoff that will touch everyone around us with your life-giving flood of love, mercy and power. In Jesus’ name, amen.
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