Grace: God Is Able

water-from-wellWhen I lived in the farming community of Hazelton, Kansas, I enjoyed the slow pace of life, and the many wonderful people I met there.  One of the few negatives was the water. Because it was so bad I carried a water jug in my truck, so I could fill it at an artesian well.

When I read 2 Corinthians 9:8, I think of that refreshing free-flowing well of cool water:

God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.

Grace was a theme of emphasis with the Apostle Paul, and it’s one of the feel-good doctrines of the Bible that people like to discuss.

Grace is a small word, but its five letters contain truth of epic proportion; and, its spectrum is as colorful as the rainbow.  Consider a few of these:

  • Grace is available to help you grow as a Christian—2 Peter 3:18: Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity.
  • If you have the can’t-do-blues, God provides empowering grace—2 Corinthians 12:9: My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
  • There is an extra portion of grace available to the humble—James 4:5-6: He gives grace to the humble.
  • You can confidently ask for it—Hebrews 4:16: Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need.

The most important aspect of grace and the one on which the preceding stand is saving grace—Romans 5:1-2: Since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of God’s glory.

The grace that offers you peace with God, might be the missing peace that will solve your life’s puzzle.

Amazing Grace is a beloved hymn that was written by  John Newton, and he spoke of the power of grace: I am not what I ought to be. I am not what I want to be. I am not what I hope to be. But still, I am not what I used to be. And by the grace of God, I am what I am.

 

 

 

Water: Cool and Fresh

Fichtner-MainwaringSprayPark1Oh what a relief it is!  The cooler weather and the nice rain has been a welcome relief from the scorching temperatures.

It’s been so hot and dry, my garden has been withering, and I’ve had water on my mind.  How often and how much should I water?

While I was trying to find the answers to my questions, I found that the average household uses about 408 gallons each day and about 148,920 gallons a year.

So how is this water being used?  Most of it goes down the drain through:

  • The toilet……………….26.7 %
  • The Clothes Washer…21.7 %
  • Showers & Baths…….16.9 %
  • Leaks……………………13.7 %
  • Kitchen use ……………10.7 %
  • Cleaning………………….5 %
  • Dishwasher ……………..1 %
  • Other ……………………..4.3 %

As I was thinking of this, I remembered a conversation that Jesus had with a woman at a well.  She had come in the heat of the day to draw water from the public well, and Jesus said to her: “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”

The water bill has already been paid, so come to Jesus and drink deeply.

One Hand and One Drink

images (4)I had one of those nights.  I went to bed at my usual time and woke up at the normal hour.  Based on the number of hours I was in bed, I should have been able to call it a good night’s sleep.

But, it was one of those nights.  I had one crazy dream after another.  They were random and senseless, and I awoke feeling like I had not rested.

I did discover a new word.  It’s a word I’ve never heard before, and I wonder if there was something in one of those weird dreams that lead me to the word GURFA.

The origin of GURFA is Arabic.  It is used in reference to the amount of water that a person can hold in one hand. Other than discussing it here, I doubt I will ever give much consideration to GURFA again.

I’m not too concerned with the amount of water that person can hold in one hand.  I am, however, very interested in the one person who can hold, in one hand, all the water you and the rest of the world will ever need.

Jesus is this person, and He said:  “Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst—not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life (John 4:13-14 ~The Message).”

Water: An Essential of Life

kenya-water-crisis-projectI think it was Abraham Lincoln who said that, “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”  Whenever I think of this quote, the subject of statistics comes to mind.

People use statistics for different reasons. Someone has said that, “Figures don’t lie. But all liars figure,” and I think it was Vin Scully who said, “Statistics are used much like a drunk uses a lamppost: for support, not illumination.”

Some statistics are profound and purposeful, while others are simple and of little value.  I’ll let you be the judge as to the value of the list below:

  • Studies show that 3 out of 4 people make up 75% of the population.
  • More than 10 people a year are killed by a vending machine.
  • The most children born to one woman was 69, she was a peasant who lived a 40 year life, in which she had 16 twins, 7 triplets, and 4 quadruplets.
  • During the first year of its life, a new baby will deprive each of its parents around 350-400 hours of sleep.
  • The human eye blinks an average of 4,200,000 times a year.

I think this second list contains some statistics that are truly worthy of your attention:

  • 783 million people do not have access to clean and safe water. 37% of those people live in Sub-Saharan Africa
  • According to the World Health Organization, for every $1 invested in water and sanitation, there is an economic return of between $3 and $34.
  • Nearly 1 out of every 5 deaths in children under the age of 5 is due to a water-related disease.
  • 1 in 9 people worldwide do not have access to safe and clean drinking water.

When I washed my truck today, I wasn’t thinking of the few people who die because of a vending machine.  I did, however, wonder about what I should do to help the 283,710,000 people in Sub-Saharan Africa who don’t have access to clean and safe water.

I also thought of something else.  It was the discussion that Jesus had with a woman who was drawing water from a well.  In His typical fashion, Jesus used a common site and a traditional practice to teach a spiritual truth:  Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life (John 4:13-14).”

Based on what Jesus said, 100% of all people need to look to Him for salvation (John 14:6).  Take a close look at Him; study Him intently, and drink the cup of salvation that He offers you.