Our God has provision for us!
I know, I know—most of you think that what you need right now is three months at the coast. Walking on the beach, drinks on the deck, and with all my heart I hope you find that. But for most of us, a sabbatical in some gorgeous refuge is not available. What is available is the River of Life, God himself, in ways we have not yet tapped into.
God wants to make his life available to you. Remember — he’s the creator of those beautiful places you wish you could go to for a sabbatical. All that beauty and resilience, all that life comes from God, and he wants to impart a greater measure of himself to you! The life of God is described in Scripture as a river — a powerful, gorgeous, unceasing, ever-renewing, ever-flowing river.
Ezekiel was given a number of beautiful visions, glimpses into the kingdom of God that permeates this world. He saw the temple of God in Jerusalem, and out of the temple was flowing the River of Life. As it flowed forth across the countryside, it became so deep and wide it wasn’t possible to swim across it — an image of abundance! I love how the passage ends: “Where the river flows everything will live” (Ezekiel 47:9).
Everything will live. This is what we want — to live, to find life in its fullness again.
The apostle John was given a revelation of the coming kingdom and the restored earth, and he saw the River of Life flowing right down the middle of the city of God:
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. (Revelation 22:1–2)
There is so much life flowing from God that it flows like a mighty river. Isn’t that marvelous? Follow me now — the River of Life is not just for later. Jesus stated clearly that the river is meant to flow out of our inner being right here, in this life: “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them” (John 7:37–38).
The mighty life of God flowing in you and through you, saturating you like a river.
Now let me pull all this together. We have a capacity and drive in us for living. It’s a precious longing, and it’s taken a beating. God is “the fountain of life” (Psalm 36:9). There is so much life flowing from God that it flows like a river no one can even swim across — a superabundant outflow of life! This life is meant to flow in us, and through us.