DayBreaks for 4/24/18 – They’ve Never Been There

Image result for amazon river

 

DayBreaks for 4/24/18: They’ve Never Been There   

The story is told of the explorer who some years ago had just returned to his country from the Amazon. The people at home were eager to learn all about the vast and mighty river and the country surrounding it. How he wondered, could he ever describe it to them – how could he ever put into words the feelings that flooded into his heart when he saw the exotic flowers and heard the night sounds of the jungle. How could he communicate to them the smells the filled the air and the sense of danger and excitement that would come whenever he and his fellows explorers encountered strange animals or paddled through treacherous rapids?

So the explorer did what all good explorers do – he said to the people, “go and find out for yourselves what it is like”, and to help them he drew a map of the river pointing out the various features of its course and describing some of the dangers and some of the routes that could be used to avoid those dangers.

The people took the map and they framed and hung it on the wall of the local science museum so that everyone could look at it. Some made copies of it. After a period of time many of those who made copies for themselves considered themselves experts on the river – and indeed they knew its every turn and bend, they knew how broad it was and how deep, where the rapids where and where the falls. They knew the river and they instructed others in what it was like whenever those people indicated an interest in it.

I think that many people today are in the same situation. We know the scriptures but we do not understand them. And we do not understand them because we have not been there. We must not simply look at the scriptures and their meaning, we must go there. We must experience what it means to repent of our sins and allow God to forgive us. Would you this morning take the map down from the wall and go to the river with me. See what is there. Allow Christ to open your mind, to breathe his Holy Spirit upon you, and make you a disciple from the heart.

PRAYER: Let us drink deeply from the sweet well of your word and Spirit that we may know you from experience and not just from printed page! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

COPYRIGHT 2018 by Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

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DayBreaks for 6/3/16 – The Demise of the Ancient Mariner

DayBreaks for 6/03/16 – The Demise of the Ancient Mariner

From the DayBreaks archive, 2006:

A theologian by the name of John S. Dunne tells a story about a group of ancient Spanish sailors who came to South America for the first time.  The trip had been extremely difficult.  The arrived off the coast of South America and came across the entry to the Amazon River, the largest freshwater passageway in the entire world.  In fact, the entry into the mouth of the river was so large that they thought that they were still sailing in the ocean.  They had been traveling so long that they had run out of fresh water, but never expecting that they were sailing on fresh water instead of the salt water of the ocean, it never occurred to them to try to drink the water.  The result was predictable: some of the sailors died of thirst while floating upon the largest source of freshwater in the world. 

In his book, Finding God in Unexpected Places, Phillip Yancey noted that this was a fitting analogy for what is happening in our day and age.  We live in a time where information is easily accessible, where interest in spiritual things (if not Christianity) is high.  And yet, as Yancey put it: “Some people starve to death spiritually while all around them manna rots…”

While we may be quick to think that the Spanish sailors were very misguided for not trying the water, aren’t we a lot like them in many, many ways?  Even Christians seem to be starving for that which will sustain life and give it purpose and meaning, and all the while we are surrounded by Bibles – the Bread of Life.  Yet we are thirsty, looking and searching for a drink that will satisfy, and we have God’s Word everywhere.  In life, there are not silver bullets…at least, in the physical realm.  But there is a silver bullet in spiritual life – and God gave it to us in the Word.  Will we drink until we are satisfied?

John 7:37-39 (NLT) – On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, “If you are thirsty, come to me!  If you believe in me, come and drink! For the Scriptures declare that rivers of living water will flow out from within. (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)

PRAYER:  Lord Jesus, we are so thirsty and yet we seem to turn to everyone except You.  Help us, Jesus, to see and recognize the provision you’ve made for us to have all things that pertain to life and godliness, help us not only to drink deeply of the well of life ourselves, but to help others find it, too.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.