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Stagnant ponds or living water?

"Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life." ~Jesus speaking in John 10:14
In a text conversation with my cousin, we talked about speaking truth into the lives of those we love, and the difficulty it sometimes brings. Measuring when to speak the truth in love in a way that helps rather than offends can be tricky business. Truth is always best, but it can hurt at times. Our discussion centered on praying and seeking the right timing in addressing issues in a timely manner. As we came to the close of our conversation she told me how she was struggling with the timing but how avoiding the situation created tensions. No one likes confrontation, but avoiding them isn't healthy either. When we avoid being truthful we can easily become stuck and stagnant in our fellowship with others. As I told my cousin: stagnant water stinks, but living water refreshes.
Our conversation immediately made me think of the line from the twenty-third Psalm where David describes the Shepherd/sheep relationship. "The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul." (Verses 1-3a) You see, sheep require a lot of water. According to www.sksheep.com they need up to a gallon a day per 100 pounds of body weight. That's a lot of water. But sheep are afraid of moving water because they don't swim. In addition, their wool is highly absorbent, and it would mean almost certain death if they were to fall into the water. The shepherd must find water that is still, but not stagnant, because stagnant water carries bacteria and disease. But deep pools, even though seemingly still, have currents of fresh water swirling beneath the surface keeping the water from becoming stagnant.
All this brought my thinking full circle to the relationships we have with Christ and one another and the need for living water in our lives. Our relationships are much like the Shepherd/sheep relationship. Christ is the head, but we all bear the responsibility of being like Him in how we deal with those around us. Stagnant lives create stagnant ponds. Living water offers refreshment and life. We should be constantly diligent to keep the waters of grace flowing freely from our lips; grace that loves, grace that exhorts, grace that heals.

The amazing grace of God that continually brings refreshment and life.

Every day we choose whether we are going to become a stagnant pond or a vessel of living water. Grace that is allowed to flow refreshes both the receiver and the one who gives it freely.

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I hope you enjoy the video of the Hallelujah chorus and allow it to refresh your soul.