"A Time of Refreshing"
We have a contract with a lawn service that allows them to treat our lawn for unwanted weeds and to provide fertilizer for it at the appropriate times. It has proved to be a good investment. However, it would not have been, if we did not have the good fortune to have a irritation system to provide the needed water. All the weed treatment and fertilizer in the world would not produce an attractive lawn without water. Without water, the grass would become parched and its beauty would not be realized.
As I sat on our patio this morning watching our dog run through the water from the irrigation system, I began to see a important spiritual lesson to be drawn from our grass as it drank up the water. I was reminded of the words of Jesus when He spoke to the woman at the well: “Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life” (John 4:13, 14 NASB). I believe the water of which Jesus spoke in this passage was the Holy Spirit. Later in John 16:13, 14, Jesus speaks more about the coming of the Spirit. He said, “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth, for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you” (NASB). In both scriptures, Jesus proclaims the absolute need for the Holy Spirit, who indwells believers.
Just as the grass can’t thrive without water. We can’t thrive in our Christian walk without the Holy Spirit’s empowerment. We can do many good things but, ultimately, we will dry up without the reviving presence of the Spirit in our life.
Our irrigation system was placed under our yard, when the house was built. It is always there waiting to be activated. It is activated by turning the switch in the panel in our garage. The Holy Spirit was placed in us the moment we sincerely received Christ into our life as our Lord and Savior. He patiently waits, always willing to assist us as we navigate the storms of life. He wants nothing more than to make our lives beautiful by filling them with the fruit that He has for us. Paul describes the fruit the Spirit wishes us to have in Galatians 5:22, 23: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law” (NASB).
While this fruit is available to all believers at all times, it does not come automatically. The Holy Spirit does not force Himself on us. Like our irrigation system, He must be activated in our lives. He is activated by our repentance and our complete surrender to His will. When we turn loose of the control of our lives and look to Him for daily guidance and deliverance, He never fails us and we are able to grow to our full potential in the Lord. It is then we can understand the full meaning of Acts 3:19: “Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (NASB).