CORRECTION to devotional for Thursday 6th. Please note that this was written by Dean Gardner, not Catherine Taylor.
Ezekiel had a vision where he sees water flowing out from the temple, and an angel led him through water that was ankle-deep, then knee-deep, then waist-high and finally to water deep enough to swim in, a river that no-one could cross (Ezekiel 47:1-5).
I believe the river is a symbol of our relationship with God and his Holy Spirit, who is often depicted as a river. There are four different levels of water in the river, starting with the shallow part and eventually leading to the deep part.
The ankle-deep water could reflect our initial meeting with Jesus where the Holy Spirit comes to live in us as part of the trinity of God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Just as we test the temperature of the sea or pool water by standing ankle-deep in it, so we are unsure at first how the Holy Spirit functions in our lives at first.
Then we start realising that the Holy Spirit is our standby (John 14:16). We turn to Him in times of distress and confusion for Him to comfort us and guide us, and He strengthens our ‘knees’ to withstand the troubles we face.
However, sometimes it is only in real crisis times, that we learn to cling to God continuously, so that His arms are around our ‘waists’ and we lean on Him fully as the only way to maintain our balance and sanity through many weeks, months or even years.
The final stage is that of immersion in the river of the Holy Spirit, where we no longer stand on our own feet or depend on our own strength, but we yield ourselves to the flow of the Holy Spirit in us at all times. We have learned to trust Him completely and have a truly intimate relationship with God. We are ‘ever filled and stimulated with the Holy Spirit’ (Ephesians 5:18, Amplified Bible).
This level of functioning of the Holy Spirit is what we aim for, even if we fall short at times. The more we achieve this oneness with Him, the more we will desire it, because the supernatural experience of His power and love flowing through us is indescribably precious, tangible and uplifting. There is truly nothing like it.
Prayer: Thank You, Father God, that You sent Your Holy Spirit to be with us when Jesus ascended to You. Inspire us to desire more and more of Your presence that we may be ‘filled through all our beings with the richest measure of the divine presence, and become a body wholly filled and flooded with God himself’ (Ephesians 3:19, Amplified Bible). Amen.
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