Rivers – Part 1

When I took my GCSE exams at school, I had to do a project for geography. I chose to do a project given us on the flow of rivers. So off I pottered to a local river and spent ages taking measurements of soil, the water flow and all kinds of things to see how rivers worked! Of course, rivers are incredibly important, in the Bible and in our world today as we need water and water brings life!

John 7:38 – Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

Jesus was clear that believing in him meant that there would be a flow of life running out of that person. It wouldn’t be actual water (!) but Jesus was referring to the Holy Spirit. Jesus said the same thing to the woman at the well in John 4 and we need to ask Jesus to fill us with his Spirit so that we overflow with God’s living water. First of all, we need the refreshing that it brings and also as it flows out from us, it touches people around us with God’s love.

John 4.10, 13-14 – 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.”… “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

The picture below was taken on Dartmoor in England. It shows a river on the West of the Moor, with a small stepping stone bridge over it. The picture looks calm and tranquil but at times, the river runs fast and deep, carrying stuff away downstream. 

There are different ways rivers work and different times / levels with rivers. Sometimes God’s Spirit in us speaks to us gently, like a calm river on a Summer’s day. Other times, the river is more powerful as God washes away rubbish from our lives and cleanses us from sin. But God’s Spirit gives us life as we worship God in Spirit and in Truth (John 4.24). 

Revelation 22.1 – Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb

A Prayer: Lord, thank you for water. I couldn’t live without it. In the same way, I cannot live without the water of your Holy Spirit and the river of life within me from you. Thank you that the water that flows from the throne of God is life and is as clear as crystal. Lord, fill me with that river of life daily as I live for you in this broken world, and touch other people’s lives with your life and love in me. Amen.