Free Refreshing Drink
by Peter Brokaar
27 April 2023« Previous Day | Next Day »
This spring I did something I had never done before. It’s always fun to learn new things! I purchased a spile and used it to tap sap from birch trees. This time of year, as the tree produces its leaves, the sap is running up the trees in high quantities. Following the right procedure, I managed to get about six litres of deliciously refreshing sap from one tree in a day. It struck me how this refreshing liquid is freely available to us, if only we know how to access it.
I have always been impacted by the story of Hagar and Ishmael and how God cared for them. They were treated harshly and sent away into a hostile climate. Things got bad quickly and Hagar thought her son was going to die of thirst. Then the Angel of the Lord appeared and took care of her and her son. ‘Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. So she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink’ (Genesis 21:19).
Finding this water meant the difference of life and death for Hagar and Ishmael. God’s provision for them changed the course of world history. Today, their descendants number in the hundreds of millions.
God has an unseen resource available for all believers, the Holy Spirit. We can drink from this well any time of day, for free, and as often as we want. But many times we go through our days without availing ourselves of God’s provision of His own presence. To go back to the analogy of the birch sap, the ‘spile’ required to access the Holy Spirit is prayer. The only ‘method’ through which we can receive God’s refreshing Spirit is by asking Him in prayer.
A big challenge for me is to consider how thirsty I actually am for more of Him. I tapped the birch sap because I thought it would be a bit of fun. But I learnt about this method when I was in a very poor part of the world. For these folk it wasn’t just fun. It was part of their survival.
How much do we ask for the Holy Spirit because we think it might be ‘fun’? We might feel we’re kind of OK without Him, but we’ll ask for His Spirit because it might make our Christian experience more interesting. I think we need to get to the place of being totally desperate for Him, to recognise that we cannot exist without Him. I think we should be asking God to make us more thirsty for Him.
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