The churches in today’s world are straying from major cornerstones of our faith, including the belief that Jesus is fully God and fully man and the only way to the Father.
People are more comfortable viewing Jesus as a great model of love rather than the Creator who died for the sins of the world and holds the destiny of all people in His hands.
We have lost our sense of awe and wonder in God in human flesh, reconciling the world back to Himself.
The book of Acts recounts Jesus’ resurrected life through His ascension. In doing so, we witness Him ignite a movement for His message through the Holy Spirit working in His followers. This book reads a lot like a war journal as we encounter stories of people going everywhere telling this story: New life and forgiveness can be found in Christ Jesus alone.
This Church was on fire for the gospel. Can the same be said for the Church today?
It seems to me that we’ve become so spiritually content with our sins being forgiven and the free gift of eternal life that we see no need to fight our hearts daily to make Christ our ultimate focus, but the opposite should be true.
We are called to let the Spirit constantly overwhelm our hearts with the truth of Christ as we shout of His great love and compellingly convict others with the good news of salvation through Christ alone. And in this high call, we fulfill our desire for a life of meaning.
True, Christ-following believers—though morally good—often fall captive to two sins spoken by the Prophet Jeremiah. These sins have historically attacked every generation of God’s people.
"'My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water.'” -Jeremiah 2:13
I think this Scripture could be paraphrased as follows: God's presence is with us in everything He asks of us for His name, but we think our way is better than trusting Him. He's met our every need, but we insist on living on our own water supply and apart from His presence. In these attempts at self-dependence, our storage tank leaks, our bank account comes up empty, and our investments fly away. People who build their own "cisterns" instead of trusting the Lord always come up empty.
In Romans 1:25, Paul writes, “They exchanged the truth about God for a lie,” and I believe we often buy the lie that we can rely on our personal water supply to be effective for the Kingdom. In doing so, we forgo trusting our Almighty God.
The prophet Haggai spells out the results of this thinking in great detail.
"'Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.'” -Haggai 1:5-6
When God asks us to do something, the living water of His presence—not whatever cisterns we’ve built—is what we need to fulfill the call.
As we run the race set before us and fight the good fight of faith, we can cling to two promises from our Almighty God: He is with you and He will never forsake you.
We can rest in the ever-present One who quenches our every thirst with His living water.
John's travels for ministry behind the Iron Curtain led him to found East-West Ministries International in 1993. John and his wife, Susie, live in Dallas, Texas and have a grown daughter and two grandchildren.