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Satisfied and Satisfying


Satisfied and Satisfying

Loved ones,

I am burdened to pray that I myself and we as a church would become more faithful and fruitful in our efforts to reach people with the gospel of Jesus Christ. As we go into the month of April, we are praying for breakthroughs of power in gospel outreach.

Among the many elements that God uses to make his people effective in evangelism, I think we often overlook one of the most obvious and important prerequisites: we ourselves must be increasingly delighted in who Jesus is if we want to winsomely and compellingly witness of him to others.

In last week’s article, we saw that Jesus alone is able to satisfy our spiritual thirst. Back in John 4 he spoke to the woman of Samaria about the personal benefits of his living water.  He said, “Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty forever.  The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:14).  

But Jesus does not want us to end with our own personal satisfaction in him. He wants us to become conduits of his living water to others. Look at what He says: “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ ” Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified” (John 7:39).

A Spiritual Torrent

When you thirst for Jesus and drink deeply from his fullness, the Holy Spirit will pour forth rivers of living water from your innermost being, bringing incalculable blessing to others. Oswald Chambers invites us to imagine what God can do through our lives: “You can never measure what God will do through you if you are rightly related to Jesus.”  

There’s not a single spiritual blessing that God wants you to keep to yourself alone. He doesn’t pour out God’s Spirit in us to make a puddle or a stagnant pond.  

We’re not created to be receptacles of spiritual blessings; we are called to be rivers of living water—not just a trickle, but a spiritual torrent. So the old Sunday School song is actually more profound than we might think: “I’ve got a river of life flowing out of me/Makes the lame to walk and the blind to see/Opens prison doors, sets the captives free/I’ve got a river of life flowing out of me.”

The joy and satisfaction we have in Christ will turn sour unless it flows out in blessing to others.  But the more we pour out, the more satisfied we will be.  Bunyan captured this in a little poem:

There was a man – the world did think him mad,
The more he gave away, the more he had.

Think for a moment about your neighbors, about the people at work and school, about the communities that surround us here in the Fox Valley.  There are a lot of thirsty people around us.  Some of them know they are thirsty, many others are dehydrated and don’t have a clue.  They’re crying out for someone to show them “there’s more to this life than living and dying, more than just trying to make it through the day... and there’s more than this life alone can be.”

I think of a song by Peggy Lee, as she reflects on the story of her life, and hauntingly asks over and over again: “Is that all there is?” Someone in your life right now is wondering, “Is this all there is? Is this all there is?” May we drink so deeply of Jesus and find ourselves so satisfied in him that our friends can find rivers of life flowing out of us.

Praying with you for breakthroughs in gospel outreach,

Pastor David Sunday