by Pastor Tim Burt
One summer day a some years back, I was working on my backyard landscaping and gardening project. I didn't want this project to drag on because I was going to head out-of-town later in the week and had limited time to work on it. It was an absolutely beautiful sunny day in the mid seventies. I started working early in the morning and was still at it come 6:30 that evening when suddenly I felt weak and off.
I hadn't stopped to eat or drink anything all day. That’s not too bright and I did know better. I had hand-carried and placed over 450 12-15 lb. boulder rocks. That's about 3 tons of rock! I started to feel strange. My mouth was extremely dry and I was feeling a little disoriented and close to passing out. I knew immediately that I was suffering from dehydration.
The average water content of the human body is 40-70% of body weight. It needs water to function in all the ways God intends it to. Dehydration is the process of excessive loss of water. It happens for a number of reasons. It was something I always had to watch out for when I did long distance running. Most long distance runners carry water with them to help prevent this from happening. I've heard medical professionals say that the average person doesn't understand dehydration, nor recognize the signs or how to work toward preventing it. It's easy to eat something that disagrees with your body. When that happens and it leads to vomiting and diarrhea, it can easily cause dehydration.
Have you ever experienced spiritual dehydration? When all we do is listen to people talk about worldly things, read worldly magazines, participate in worldly events, listen to worldly music and watch worldly movies and television, spiritual diarrhea and dehydration are going to be a fact of your life. You will soon become "dry" toward God and begin to feel far from Him. Am I calling you out right now?
Spiritually, too many people let themselves get dehydrated far too often. Is this something we should change? Well look at it this way. Frequent dehydration leads to serious health issues. So, what do you think? God loves us and isn't trying to make our relationship with Him difficult. We make it difficult! We let our life become filled with everything but Him. When I begin to get dehydrated, I work hard to put water and fluids back in my system. Within a half a day to a day, I am feeling better!.
The Word of God is often referred to as water—washing water and refreshing water—all the things to us spiritually that water is able to do for us naturally. When we pray and ask God to speak to us through His Word, the Holy Spirit begins to illuminate truth, understanding, and revelation to our heart. As this happens, the Word of God refreshes us, washes us, and keeps us from getting disoriented to the world's and Satan's way of thinking. It keeps our heart and mind refreshed and on track thinking God's thoughts. This is spiritual hydration and spiritually healthy for you!
We read of water and refreshing in John 4:10 (NLT). "Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.” And also in John 7:37-38 (NLT) "Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”
We also read how the Word of God cleanses in Ephesians 5:25-27 (NKJV) "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish."
We read a precious promise from God's Word in Isaiah 44:3 "For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground." God was calling to refresh their spirit using the illustration of water and hydration. God is always trying to speak into our lives and refresh us. He does so through His Word—the Bible, through church groups and experiences, through Christian people, through printed articles and media, and more. Of course you have to avail yourself to these kinds of atmospheres and resources to receive it. When you pray for God to refresh you, you should raise your expectation and open your eyes. He is faithful and that refreshing will soon come!
What God promises to do for us spiritually always results in natural blessing also. When the people of God wholeheartedly returned to seeking the Lord and would pray and ask God to water and refresh their hearts, they would see God show up in their lives in ways they knew were the fulfillment of His promise. They would begin to again feel God's love and His mercy and grace. Their hearts would once again become tender and they'd feel sorrow for being backslidden. They would suddenly find a new inward strength to resist temptation and ungodly ways. They would return to living for Him again. They would soon find their land refreshed from natural rains and find the desert places they lived in, with streams of water running through. Blessings would begin to overtake their lives once again. And as the rest of Isaiah 44:3-4 would begin to take hold in their life. "... I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants. They will spring up like grass in a meadow, like poplar trees by flowing streams." Their love for God that they again began to walk in, would begin to spill from them and touch and bless their loved ones.
Water is the have-to for our bodies to survive and be blessed. So is the cleansing and refreshing of God's Word ministering to our spirits.
When we've let ourselves become spiritually dehydrated, then we must make a change by obeying Acts 3:19. "Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord."
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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