“On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. 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.”
What did Jesus mean when He said, “Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water”?
When Grandma hands us a Bible and says, “Read this,” she means well, and her heart is in the right place … yet for most of us, merely reading just doesn’t work. Our guilty conscience kicks in, and we know we should do it—but we usually don’t.
For me, the word study often got in the way. I’d either rush through my so-called “quiet time” (usually because I felt too busy to take the time to study), I’d skip opening my Bible and read other people’s thoughts about Scripture, or I’d pick-and-choose my way through God’s Word, cramming verses into my head—almost as if I were preparing for a test. (These approaches are quite pathetic when you think about them, yet they are a reality for so many believers!) Reading Scriptures this way left me exhausted and frustrated—anything but refreshed. And I certainly wasn’t growing spiritually.
Now I’m learning how to see the Bible in a whole new way. Instead of approaching my devotional times with solely an information-gathering mindset, I seek Jesus in the Bible. I come to Him and drink. I engage Scripture … looking for connection, relationship, and spiritual transformation. This enables my heart and soul “to be penetrated by an intimate word from God.”
As I receive passages of Scripture, I …
… “listen” intently to God’s personal message to me; I do it relationally, rather than seeking only to learn more about Him cognitively.
… allow Scripture to become an instrument of God’s control rather than a tool that I control to accomplish my own goals.
Lord Jesus, I want living water to flow from my heart. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, speak to me through Your Word, grow my faith. Amen.
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