PADDLING OR SWIMMING?
“Deep calls to deep in the roar of You waterfalls;
all Your breakers and Your billows have swept over me”
(Psalm 42:7 (HCSB).
Do you like to swim in shallow or deep water? In our spiritual life many of us play around in the shallow puddles. We never go any further. However, God wants to take us out into the deep with Him. Do you long for deep waters?
Ezekiel 47 is an amazing picture of the waters flowing from the sanctuary of the temple, also speaking of the anointed, healing power of the Holy Spirit. Read the whole chapter. The picture begins with waters to the ankles, but that’s not where they end. The final picture shows us waters to swim in. What’s your destination?
Let’s have a look at these waters, shall we?
TO THE ANKLES
The waters start at the ankles (v. 3). This is where we usually start when we get into the water. We stand in the water up to our ankles to feel the temperature. If it’s cold, we muster up courage to brace the cold waters and go into the deep.
We’ve got our feet on the ground and we’re standing. This is where we first start in Christ. Little by little and day by day we learn the ways, the principles, and the promises of God and learn to stand upon them. We learn to stand and keep on standing.
Ephesians 6:13, 14 says: “Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to STAND. STAND THEREFORE.”
TO THE KNEES
But there’s more. God wants to take us further. Up to the knees (v. 4). The knees speak of kneeling in prayer, although we can pray in any position. If we are moving on in Christ we will become women of prayer. Unless we communicate with God awe will not get to know our God. Our prayer life shows our dependence upon God. Without prayer, we show an independent spirit and that we can manage quite well on our own, thank you.
When we come to the place of knowing we cannot accomplish anything in our own flesh, we become desperate to pray. When we are brought to a place of humility, we will pray. When we are touched with the needs of the people around us and the great needs of the world, we will pray.
We know that everything is impossible without prayer because prayer confesses our own need and draws on God’s power. Nearly every day I quote Zechariah 4:6 before the Lord: “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit saith the LORD of hosts.” I am cast upon God, for I cannot make anything happen on my own. It is only by the power of the Holy Spirit through the vehicle of prayer.
I must be a mother of prayer. It was my most powerful weapon as I nurtured our children. I could not have raised our children without prayer. I cannot even survive today without prayer. Currently we face a huge challenge in our family, so what are we doing? We have nightly prayer meetings as a family and call upon the Lord.
TO THE LOINS
God continues to bring us through the waters. This time the waters are to the loins (v. 4). The loins are the area of the body from where procreation occurs in both the male and female. Not many want the Holy Spirit to have full control of this area of their body. They offer their feet to God to go wherever He sends. They offer their hearts to praise Him, their arms to reach out to people, and their tongues to speak of Him, but they don’t offer their loins. Strange isn’t it? However, the Holy Spirit wants to pour out His anointing on every part of our bodies. He wants to be Lord over all (Romans 12:1, 2; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19, 20; and 2 Corinthians 6:15-18).
WATERS TO SWIM IN
Now the waters are overwhelming. Over our heads. Ezekiel 47:5 says: “Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, WATERS TO SWIM IN, a river that could not be passed over.”
God’s ultimate plan is to bring us into the fullness of His Spirit, the fullness of His love, and the fullness of His blessed ways. He could not plunge us in immediately. We would not be ready. He brings us little by little. As we learn to trust Him in the little things, we learn to trust Him in the bigger things. In these waters we can’t put our feet on the ground. We have come to the place where we can do nothing in our own strength. Without God we’re finished. But with God all things are possible. We are totally cast upon Him to hold us up in the waters.
We cannot rely on our own strength and wisdom to mother the children He has given us. We can’t rely completely on our husbands for provision, only God. We can’t work out the answers to our challenges on our own. We can no longer put our feet on the bottom. It’s God or nothing else.
In the swimming waters we no longer rely on what we can see with the natural eye; we see by the eye of faith. Hebrews 11:1 (Moffat) says: “Now faith means that we are confident of what we hope for, convinced of what we do not see.”
Blessings from Nancy Campbell
“Oh God, please save me from being satisfied to splash around in puddles. Please take me to the deep waters where I have to trust You completely. It is scary with my weak faith, but God, I thank You that I can trust You wholly. Take me into the adventure of swimming in the river of Your Holy Spirit. Amen.”
I will never be satisfied with anything less than waters to swim in.