Last week I had a picture posted like this on my Instagram feed. Obviously it's when I was in Arizona because we don't have anything like that near us in South Bend! But I wanted to share with you the inspiration I found while at Sabino Canyon Dam.
First of all I had to do one last hike in this place and the one to the dam was a quick few miles. When I got there I stood at the top of the water fall and hiked down to the base where this photo was taken. I took it laying flat on my stomach on a huge rock that overlooked the waterfall. As I laid there I just took in the scenery and let God speak through the beauty of nature.
Here's what I heard...
"Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, 'Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.'" John 7:38
I just kept hearing "rivers of living water", "rivers of living water" and when I went to this version that said "from his heart," it just hit me. We let His love into our hearts and it will FLOW from our hearts.
I have many times in my life lived by a river - the Potomac in Washington, the River Lee in Cork, Ireland, the St. Joseph River in South Bend, and the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. There are rivers all throughout the Bible. Rivers seem to be a theme and on this trip I realized how much God's love is just constantly flowing and available for all those who thirst for his righteousness. It's a beautiful thing.
That wasn't the only verse to come though.
Proverbs 21:1-3 MSG
"Good leadership is a channel of water controlled by God; he directs it to whatever end he chooses. We justify our actions by appearances; God examines our motives. Clean living before God and justice with our neighbors mean far more to God than religious performance."
I also like the NLT Version of verse 2-3,
"People may be right in their own eyes, but the Lord examines the heart. The Lord is more pleased when we do what is right and just than when we offer him sacrifices."
As I was walking into this TedX pitch I gave earlier this week it helped set my intention for the moment God was putting me on that stage. His love flows out of me like a river because I receive it and he is more pleased if I share my heart than if I try to "show off."
One final note. God didn't stop with that intention setting, the view or the verses. I heard these two songs about The River (both awesome) on my last evening there. I thought it was appropriate to share in this devotion if you want to reflect. Next week I'll be talking about how all things may be permissable but all things aren't helpful.