Have the events of the past twelve months left you feeling as dry as a bone?
God’s life flowing through us is often compared to a spring of water. In John 3:38 (ESV), Jesus said, whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” What do you do when you believe, but the water seems to be cut off? The fountain is dry?
Two weeks ago, Austin, Texas, where I live, experienced the perfect storm. Thanks to a polar vortex our usually mild winter turned frigid. It got to nine degrees one night. I was about to do the dishes when the flow of water stopped. I turned the tap handles to no avail. The city was still supplying water at that point, but because I failed to keep it moving through my pipes with sufficient force, my plumbing was frozen and nothing could make it past the blockage.
When our spirits are dry and thirsty, when we call out to God for relief and nothing comes from his reservoir of unlimited resources, could it be that our hearts are as cold and hard as my pipes? While the supply still exists, it can’t make it through that junk of ice. I didn’t want my pipes freeze, but I didn’t take the proper steps to prevent it. Neither do we intend to let our hearts grow cold to God, but when we give too much time and attention to other things and stop fanning the flames of our first love, the result is the same. We keep making demands, but nothing is forthcoming.
When I realized my pipes were frozen, I pulled out all the stops: hair dryer, hot water, light bulbs, space heaters. Maybe I wasn’t directing my efforts to the right spot, but nothing was working. Sometimes when my spiritual well is dry, I try the same kind of frantic activity. I do everything I can think of to distract myself, fulfill myself, get the mojo working again, but more of the same worldly activity won’t do the trick.
After a while of battling the frozen pipes, not only did the water stop, but the power went out, too, so those self-help efforts were no longer even possible. The frozen section of pipe was expanding. For all I knew, all my pipe were busted, and major, expensive repairs would be required.
It is the same with our spiritual water works. The longer the problem persists the more effort it takes to repair, but the next step for frozen pipes and a frozen heart is the same: wait. Wait for the sun and its warmth. Give up. Surrender the problem and call the plumber. Invite him in and let him do his work. The water will flow again, and all will be well.
Fortunately, my internal pipes did not burst, the minor leak in an outside pipe was fixed within a day of the thaw. When you’ve suffered the pain of a loss of running water for nearly a week, however, once things are flowing again, you don’t want to take anymore chances. Next time temperatures drop anywhere near freezing, my taps will be open wide. No more tiny drips or trickles.
Being in a dry and thirsty place spiritually should evoke the same response. Open your heart wide to receive your Savior. Spend time with Him in prayer and Bible study. Seek out opportunities to bask in the warmth of worship and fellowship with His Body. The Master Plumber will come at once in response to your call. And the bill has already been paid!