If you are familiar with the geography of Israel, you know that the Sea of Galilee in the north flows south by way of the Jordan River and empties into the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea goes nowhere, it has no outlet—that’s why it is called the Dead Sea. We can be like this, too.
Thoughts, feelings, experiences, and God’s Word flow into us every day. We keep them in a large reservoir inside, stored there for our use.
Someone may ask, “What’s wrong? Why don’t you share what you have inside of you?”
Our response, “Nothing’s wrong. What makes you think there’s anything wrong?”
Our words often cover what we are thinking, “You’re the one with an issue. Leave me alone.”
As individual Christians and as the church, do we resemble the Dead Sea?
“Every man possesses three characters:
that which he exhibits,
that which he really has,
and that which he believes he has.”
~Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr, novelist and journalist (1801–1890)
Let’s go through the three phrases of the quote backwards.
- What do you believe you have? What is the hope you hold on to even when everything else is falling apart?
- Is what you believe you have just a hope or do you actually have it? Is it a false hope or do you really know that it is true?
- If you have that hope—that faith—can anyone else see it? Is it just for you—bottled up for your consumption only without an outlet—or is it visible? Does it affect your day-to-day life and relationships? Can others see it, sense it, feel it? How?
Stagnant or flowing water?
Then the angel showed me a river with the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb. It flowed down the center of the main street. On each side of the river grew a tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, with a fresh crop each month. The leaves were used for medicine to heal the nations. Revelation 22:1-2, NLT