Rivers of Living Water


I began to learn about Living Water the day after I received Jesus Christ into my heart on May 15, 1976.  On that day I asked Jesus to come into my heart, to forgive my sins, and to be my Savior and the Lord of my life.  I had no idea what I was getting into.  But when my knees touched the floor as I bowed my heart before Him, He did forgive my sins.  I still have a picture of that event in my memory.  I is like I had an out of body experience because I can still see myself from a short distance away being poured on by an invisible something, and I became light-hearted and free-spirited as I had never been before!  Then, when I got up off of my knees, the college girl who had led me in that 'sinner's prayer'  told me that now God wanted to use me as a vessel to reach out and touch others as He had touched me.  That sounded good to me.

The next day two things happened.  That same college girl gave me a passage of Christian Scripture, and I began to feel that I needed to go to Roman Catholic confession.

The verse of Scripture was this:

1Co 6:19-20  Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit in you, whom you have of God? And you are not your own, for you are bought with a price. Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's.

As I meditated on that passage of Scripture I realized that 'bought with a price' is slavery!!!  I was shocked!  I didn't understand how that was possible.  So I said, "Lord Jesus, I don't understand this.  Yesterday you set me free from my sins and I literally felt the weight leave my body.  Today I am a slave again.  What's the deal?"

His answer?  "I have an all volunteer army.  You had to be free to be a volunteer."  That made sense to me, so I continued to meditate on that new reality.  I had become a slave of Jesus.  Being in law school, I realized that the essence of slavery is that there is only one right answer to God - 'Yes, Master!" to anything He might call me to do.  The worst case scenario immediately came to my mind, and I saw myself on the four-corners of downtown Timbuktu, North Africa, preaching Jesus to some local residents.  They understood only enough to become enraged with me and my message, and I saw myself dying there in Timbuktu, having accomplished nothing with my life.   Then Jesus interrupted my thoughts and said, "Not your life.  My life.  You belong to Me."

I felt like a cornered animal with no way of escape.  I said, "Lord, that is very unappealing.  What could be worse than that vision of dying in Timbuktu?"  He replied, 'Oh, there is something much worse.'  I asked, "What could be worse than that?"  He again replied, "You could continue to tell Me 'No', which you have been doing all of your life."

Again I was shocked as my life passed before me, and I realized that indeed I been telling God 'No' all of my life.

So I said, "Lord, I am going to tell You 'yes Lord' in advance to anything You want me to do because You have told me that it is the only right answer, and I have never tried saying 'Yes' to You before now.  I am not thrilled with the prospects, but I have heard that You are kind and merciful, so please remember to be kind and merciful to me."

I dozed off, and woke up saying, "Olah" at the rate of my pulse.

So, that all happened the day after I was saved from my sins on May 15, 1976.

As I mentioned previously, I began to feel that I needed to go to confession in the Roman Catholic church.  I had joined the Catholic Church seven years previously, and had attended it fairly regularly with my wife up to that point in time.  That again did not make any sense to me.  I kept thinking that I had never felt so clean and free from sin, so why should I need to go to confession?

By the next Saturday I was so pestered by the thought of going to confession that I went to the local Catholic Church I attended and looked for a priest to whom I could make confession.  I could only find one person in the whole church complex, and he was a recent graduate from seminary, living at that church and awaiting appointment to a position in that diocese.  I forget his name, but I asked if he would receive my confession, and he asked if I wanted open or closed confession.  I told him that open confession was fine with me, so we sat down and he listened to my tale which I have related previously on this page.  Then I asked him if he thought I really needed confession since I felt so clean and free.  He replied, "Probably not, but I will grant you absolution if you want it."  I didn't want to offend him, so I asked for absolution, and he granted it.

As I left the church I realized, "I just witnessed to that priest!"  I was thrilled with that realization, and went home rejoicing.

MORE OF THE STORY, PART 1:

Several months later I saw that priest from a distance of about 50 yards/meters.  Our eyes met, he grinned and nodded to me, but we did not have any contact or conversations.  But I realized that God had brought me into contact with that priest, who had just graduated from seminary, and knew all the doctrine that he needed to be a Roman Catholic priest.  I, on the other hand, knew very little doctrine, but I knew Jesus.  And God had allowed me to be a vessel for Him to use to add to that priest's spiritual education!  Again I was thrilled, and less apprehensive of the results of saying "Yes, Master" to Jesus Christ.  I had begun to see at least a trickle of Living Water flowing through my life to touch others.

MORE OF THE STORY, PART 2:

Over the years I have had the immense privilege of speaking spiritual words to people, and doing spiritual works which have touched people in various ways, and I have had the immense privilege of receiving spiritual words and works from God through others, related on various pages.

We all have valuables to give to others, and we all need valuables which we can receive from others.  I am convinced that all good things come from God, but He often uses other people and creatures as vessels of His grace and truth to reach us.

THE REST OF THE STORY:  Still being written and told.

I encourage you, dear reader, to ask God to wash you with His Rivers of Living Water, and I suspect that you may be surprised at the vessels He may use to reach out and touch you as He sees fit!

Heb 13:20-21  Now may the God of peace (who brought again our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant) make you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you that which is well pleasing in His sight through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.