5 Habits - Overflow #3

Welcome to Everyday Devotions. These daily Bible readings and Prayer Pathways are designed to help you go deeper with God each day in response to what you are hearing at the Everyday Church services and Life Group gatherings.

Wednesday 5th February

Over the past four weeks, we have looked at four healthy habits that promote spiritual growth in us – Bible Meditation and Prayer Pathways and Sung Worship and being filled with the Holy Spirit. This week, we are looking at a fifth and final healthy habit – allowing what God is doing in our hearts to Overflow to the world around us.

Bible Meditation

John 7:37-39

37 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” 39 By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.

1) Why do you think Jesus emphasises that we will only be filled with the Holy Spirit if we are “thirsty”? What is he trying to tell us here?

2) How does this tie in with what Jesus also teaches us in Matthew 5:6 – “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled”?

Jesus doesn’t tell us which Old Testament Scriptures he has in mind when he says that “Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” There are actually a number of Old Testament Scriptures that he might have in mind, so we are looking at several of them in our Everyday Devotions across the course of this week. Here is the third one:

Psalm 46:1-5 & 10-11

1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells.
5 God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day …

10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
11 The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.
3) General Knowledge question: What was unique about Jerusalem in the entire ancient world? Answer: It was the only major city in the ancient world that was not built on a river. Thebes was built on the River Nile, Damascus on the River Abana and Babylon on the River Euphrates, but Jerusalem had no river at all. What, then, does the psalmist mean in verse 4 when he says, “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God”?

4) God doesn’t make mistakes. His decision to have his Temple built in the only riverless major city in the ancient world was deliberate. Rivers defended cities, so he wanted his people to know that he alone was their refuge and strength. Rivers stopped cities from falling to siege, so he wanted his people to know that “God is within her, she will not fail.” Rivers were worshipped as gods in the ancient world, so he wanted his people to “Be still, and know that I am God.” Translating this into our own culture, then, what things are we likely to rely on instead of on the River of God’s Holy Spirit?

Revelation 22:1-5

1 Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.
5) The book of Revelation picks up on the imagery of Psalm 46 and John 7 to inform us that the Holy Spirit is the true River of God. The Holy Spirit flows towards us from the Father and the Son in order to make us fruitful as he overflows out of our lives to the world that needs God. The river is for “the healing of the nations”. The river is for Gospel breakthrough and salvation, “yielding its fruit every month.” So, here’s the question: Do you want this in your own life? If you do, then tell God right now that you are willing to be a Rock in the desert. Tell him that you aren’t just interested in being filled with the Holy Spirit so that your own life will become a bit more exciting. Tell him that you are interested in being filled with the Holy Spirit so that he can flow through you to the people in your world who do not yet know the Lord.

Prayer Pathway

This is what the Bible means by ‘the fellowship of the Holy Spirit’. Therefore spend some time praying The Trinity Prayer today, using 2 Corinthians 13:14 to marshal your prayers before God – “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”

THE LOVE OF GOD: Thank God that he is a loving Father who longs to give good gifts to his children. Thank him that the River of the Holy Spirit flows from his throne in Revelation 22. Tell him that you trust his love and that you want to die to your own agenda so that you can get swept away by the River of the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).

THE GRACE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST: Thank Jesus that the River of the Holy Spirit flows from the Lamb too in Revelation 22. Thank him that he has done all that is required for you to receive the River of the Holy Spirit. You need only be “thirsty”. Jesus does the rest. Thank him that he has now been glorified and that we are living in the era when God’s Spirit is poured out on his people. Thank him that everything which belongs to him now belongs to you, including the Spirit of God. Thank him for God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.

THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE HOLY SPIRIT: Thank the Holy Spirit that he wants to fellowship with you by coming and turning you into a Rock in the midst of the spiritual desert all around you and by catching you up in the River of the Holy Spirit. Invite the Holy Spirit to come and do through you as he has promised, making you his vessel to overflow into the waiting world.

End with Worship

In order to help you to respond to God in sung worship, we have created two playlists for you on Spotify:

The Everyday Devotions playlist contains a handful of songs which are particularly relevant to our Everyday Devotions this week. This song list changes each week along with our devotions.

The Everyday Church Song List playlist contains most of the songs that we are singing right now across the venues of Everyday Church. This is a wider song list for you to play throughout the day to help you worship as you wash up, as you drive, as you shower, as you sit on the bus and as you go about your day.

If you are somewhere where you can sing loudly, why not use these two playlists to end by singing some songs of worship to the Lord? If you are on the bus or train, why not put on your headphones and sing in your heart to God instead?

This week the songs are largely prayers for God to fill us with his Holy Spirit and to overflow into the world through us.
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These Everyday Devotions have been produced and edited by Phil and Ruth Moore on behalf of the Everyday Church Elders

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