Friday, September 12, 2014

Friday, September 12, 2014

Today’s text

John 3:13-17

No one has gone up to heaven except the one who came down from heaven, the Son of man; as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so must the Son of man be lifted up so that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him. For this is how God loved the world: he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. For God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but so that through him the world might be saved.

Crystal river

The heart of God is endlessly flowing stream … from which you may drink … and live.
When I was 11 or 12 I sometimes rode my bike north of town with a few others boys on summer Saturdays. We left town on highway 78, crossed the state line into Wisconsin, riding three of four miles, mostly uphill, to a gravel road … that headed west.
The road dipped steeply, and we coasted a few hundred yards down the hill and across a rusty bridge. Jamming on our brakes, we sprayed gravel across the road as we turned into a dirt lane and were stopped by a wooden gate, weathered gray through years of neglect.
Dropping our bikes in a grassy ditch, we climbed over the gate and stepped into a pasture, a narrow valley split in two by a lazy steam, three or four horses grazing at the north end of the field.
We ran and rambled along the west side of the valley, beckoned by a pool of water on the edge of the field. A spring pulsed from the bottom of the pool. Crystal clear, burning cold water flowed several gallons a minute from deep within the earth
Water cress grew along the shallow edges of the pool, crisp and crunchy, slightly salty to the taste, green as grass, fresh as the water.
Kicking off our sneakers, we waded to the center of the pool and drank from our hands right over the mysterious crevice from which the water flowed. Cooled and filled, we plunked down on the pond’s marshy bank and soaked our feet in the cold water, mud oozing between out toes, watching what … to our eyes … was a miracle.
The crystal flow at the center of the pool just kept bubbling up, pushed from the earth by forces we didn’t understand. Day and night, winter and summer, it just kept flowing.
We returned a couple of times every summer until we thought we were too old for such things… as if you ever are. Every time the water flowed, beautiful and cold, fresher than any water we’d ever taste.
We didn’t ask for it. We didn’t work a pump handle to draw it from the earth. It did not depend on us in any way. Our moods, happy or sad, make any difference. Nor did the lies we told our mothers about not riding on the highway.
The water just kept flowing, refreshing us and giving a group of boys an adventure on summer days when our little town bored us to tears.
To understand God … you must understand the spring. To must understand eternal life you must know the feeling of being revived by its crystal pure water.
God is an endlessly flowing stream of love we feel in every love we ever know. The flow just continues, night and day, without ebb or end, seeking to refresh your heart that you may find peace … and know the love that never runs dry.

The lifting up of Jesus on the cross is the sign of what is always true and what always will be true. The heart of God is a heart of love constantly pouring itself out in the hope that we will know and feel the love that seeks us in every time and place, in every grace and beauty, in every bright or gloomy day.

Pr. David L. Miller

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