Rivers of Living Water

In the last few weeks I have listened to three sermons with commonality – all three preachers talked about water.

The first two sermons were read in our church one Sunday. They were both written by pastors in the Reformed Churches of New Zealand. One sermon was on Jeremiah 2:9-13, and the second one was on Romans 1:8-17. The third I heard on RefNet; it was by John Piper.

The first illustration is that God is a spring of living water. He supplies all our needs. From Him flows a fountain of life, love, mercy, and joy. Through Jeremiah, God is saying that the Israelites had this, but they forsook God and made themselves idols. Idols are a lot of work to make and look after! And the other thing – they can give us nothing! They are but cisterns – broken cisterns that can hold no water. Idols cannot provide life and love, mercy and joy. They are brokenness and deceit, a waste of time and a fraud. There is no-one like God.

The second illustration is about us, the people of God. The way I see it is, when all that cool velvet water of life comes pouring over us, what are we doing with it? We can be a reservoir by trying to keep the water for ourselves, hang on to moments, and live in the past. Or, we can let the water flow through every corner of our lives and on into the lives of other people we know. We can follow Jesus, and strive to be like Jesus.

The Gospel must not stay in my heart. It must flow on like a river.

Thirdly, in John Piper’s sermon “The Pleasure of God in Public Justice” he says

I have a fountain of living water that never runs dry and always satisfies my thirst.

That is Who God is for us. So I encourage you to let the waters of God fill your life and overflow into the lives of other people. Serve God by becoming more like Jesus, and do it all with joy!

Love, Rhoda

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What do You do With Your Thoughts?

It happens all the time. In church. When you’re trying to have a conversation with God. You were really exploring some deep topics, and learning about God. And then They walked in. Distracted you. Led you astray. Totally entrapped you. It’s called “The Scourge of the Unhelpful Thoughts.”  Whether those thoughts were about your blog, your work, your studies, or your weekly meal plan, they shouldn’t be there. So you need to get rid of them. Fast.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

But how can that be accomplished? Exactly what do we need to do? Often, I find myself just ignoring them, and quickly getting back to what I was supposed to be thinking about. The problem is, they come back. Fast. So you re-focus, and get going again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And again.grass.thoughts.2

I think that the way we deal with unwanted thoughts can’t just be fast. It has to be deep. Instead of pushing my Unhelpful Thoughts away, instead of packing them up, instead of filing them away, I send them away.

I think of my thoughts as a little airport, complete with airplanes, baggage trolleys, and hangars. All my thoughts are there, being moved around, and used as necessary. Here is the important point which I would like you to consider.

Every thought which lands can either be sent straight away, or it can be utilized.

Our heads are full of thoughts we’ve thought over the years. And not all of them are useful. So next time you remember something, or a new thought comes flying down,  take a moment to deal with it. Reflect on its usefulness in serving God. Then, send it away or keep it.

This way, your thoughts can be pure and honouring to God as you serve Him.

Books, Books, Books

old.booksYesterday Our family was so excited!!! I’d looked out the back of our public library, where the older books are kept, and found a real treasure! Six of Graham Oakley’s Church Mouse books, some of which we hadn’t yet read! We hussled home, and squashed up on the couch. We laughed ourselves to pieces!

Today I’m so excited! I just finished counting our family’s books, and the total is…. 2,190!!! I had problems with freezing cold rooms and the issue of whether or not pamphlets/ magazines etc. are books, but it was well worth it!

Tomorrow Mum is holding a meeting outside our local Post Office. It’s about a book which has very unfortunately been given a New Zealand Post Children’s Book award. This book, which I have not read, is a really filthy novel, and written for young adults. It’s so bad that the authour had to self-publish it. (You get the picture 🙂 ) Please pray that the reward will be withdrawn.

In our family, books are very important. Mum spends up to two hours each day reading to us, individually or all together. Then, we each spend a lot more time reading on our own.

It’s often hard to find books which are really worth reading. Most non-fiction is based on humanistic, evolutionary thinking, which can subtly influence our thinking, without us being aware of it. It’s a lot easier to realize what’s happening with a book titled “Atheistic Worldviews of the Twenty-first Century.” And most fiction is just as bad. So bad, in fact, that I’ve just about given up reading it, and now mostly read Christian non-fiction. I’m not saying that you should do the same, only that we should all be aware of what we, and our families, are actually learning from what we read.

Of course, the most important book is the Bible. And if we aren’t reading, studying, and memorizing it, we won’t be well-equipped to understand what really matters, what’s really going on in the world, and what other books we should be reading to understand other aspects of life in detail.

So, in conclusion:

  • Reading books is important
  • Some books are dangerous
  • All Christians should be reading the most important Book of all.KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

Hope you all enjoyed this new style of post. It’s not about me. It’s not directly from the Bible. But I wrote it, and it’s for you! (Please note that although this post was published on Saturday, it was written on, and back-dated to, Thursday.)

Interesting Page About Me, My Blog, and Our History :)

page colllageI’m getting tired of not posting. I have 20 drafts, but none are finished. Today, I published this page and thought you would be interested. This page is a collection of several things I’ve been wanting to put on my blog. They didn’t fit on any other page, and none deserved a page of their own. Have a read! :

So, I’m assuming that you are either a regular reader who is visiting this page for the first time, or else a new reader exploring… I’m Rhoda, and I wrote some about me here. But if you want to find out who I am, you’ll need to read through my posts, and pick the pieces of the puzzle 🙂 .

You should note that I live in New Zealand. This is why your comments show as (for example) ’12:30am’, and if I comment on your blog,….

To continue reading, click here 🙂

If you would like to know any more, or have any questions, please contact me, or leave a comment. Enjoy the rest of your week!

Treasure God’s Name, Part Two

white flower“I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.” Psalm 9:2

“Oh Lord, our Lord, how excellent is your name in all the earth, who have set your glory above the heavens!” Psalm 8:1

“Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and forevermore! From the rising of the sun to its going down the Lord’s name is to be praised. The Lord is high above all nations, His glory above the heavens.” Psalm 113:2-4

So, last week in Treasure God’s Name, Part One, I wrote about being wary of misusing God’s name. In contrast, His name must be viewed with reverence and awe.

A name is a reflection of a person’s character. God gave Himself the name ‘I AM’. This indicates His eternal being, He who was and is and will be, forever. God’s name is clearly to be regarded as precious. It is strong, sparkling, a precious stone. It is a privilege to use it. A privilege which must not be abused.

Use God’s name to worship Him. Read one of the many Psalms which extol the glories of the Lord.

Use God’s name with awe at His Majesty, and His creation.

Use God’s name with thankfulness that He has allowed us to speak to Him through His Spirit!

Finally, use it with joy. Because you are His child, you know Him, and He has forgiven you your sins!