One day this past spring I didn't feel like cooking dinner, so I drove to a favorite restaurant to order some "take out" items for Carol and myself. It turned out to be an uplifting and enjoyable twelve mile round trip.
Along the way as never before, I became very much aware, and was in awe, of the springtime beauty of newly formed leaves, causing the trees and shrubs to show fresh new life as they once again were wrapped in blankets of green.
The lilac bushes had begun to display their sweet-smelling blooms of white and shades of violet. In a few days they would be a beautiful sight to behold.
The crabapple blooms were incredibly thick and gorgeous this year even more so than I could recall from past years. Their white, pink and cranberry colored flowers seemed to encompass each twig of every tree a sure sign of a bountiful fruit harvest.
Of course, many of the flower beds were in bloom, too. The later varieties with their buds still emerging would soon burst forth with fragrant bouquets.
This year, our spring season arrived several weeks earlier than usual just as it did in most other regions of the country. The warm sun had ripped the icy chill of winter's grasp from the dormant soil. Spring showers and gentle breezes had brushed away all lingering traces of the past winter season breathing new life onto the land.
The on-going seasonal changes should remind us of the Scripture Promise the Lord gave to all of mankind following the flood of Noah's time, that the seasons of the year would continue forever.
Genesis 8:22 NIV
As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.
The prophet Isaiah explained that those changes each year are necessary to replenish the thirsty soil with much needed moisture - allowing the earth to become alive and productive again.
Isaiah 55:10 NASB
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
And do not return there without watering the earth
And making it bear and sprout,
And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater;
Although the magnificent landscape with its painted array of brilliant hues during the spring, summer, and fall seasons is pleasing to the eye, it is only temporary. The chill of the fall air will soon cause the flower blooms to fade. The shimmering tree leaves and colorful plant foliage will all wither and die leaving a barren portrait ready to be framed by winter's long embrace.
Just as the Lord in His Divine wisdom provides life-giving earthly water for the dormant soil, He also provides Living Water for mankind. All who choose to receive that Living Water will have their spiritual thirst quenched, and will live forever.
You see, ever since the day Adam fell from grace in the Garden of Eden, all of humanity has been under the curse of sin, spiritually lost, and destined for death. That includes you and me, for no one is exempt.
Romans 5:12 NKJV
Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned
However, the Good News is that God loves us so much that He sent His Son, Jesus, to die in our place paying the full penalty for all our sins that we might live if we choose to follow Him.
John 3:16 NASB
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
Eternal salvation is a free gift offered from God that must be believed by faith alone. It is only through Jesus that we can have eternal life. As recorded in John 14:6, Jesus said that without Him there is no way, there is no truth, and there is no life. Acts 4:12 teaches that salvation is found in no other name. Then, the apostle Paul wrote in 2 Cor. 5:17 that if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, and all things become new.
John 6:35 NKJV
And Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst."
John 7:37-38 NKJV
On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water."
While traveling through Samaria, Jesus stopped to rest beside a well. When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, He asked her to give Him a drink. She questioned why a Jew would ask a Samaritan for water.
John 4:10 NKJV
Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water."
The woman then asked where He would get that living water. Jesus' response was in the form of a comparison between the earthly well water, and the Living Water that only He can provide.
John 4:13-14 NKJV
Jesus answered and 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 final invitation to receive a renewed life and eternal salvation is given in the Scripture as recorded in Revelation 22:17. It is an urgent plea from the Holy Spirit and the bride of Christ (raptured church) to a hurting, lost, and dying world.
Revelation 22:17 KJV
And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
In that Scripture, God compassionately declares, "Your spiritual thirst is crying out, 'I want to be satisfied.' Believe in Me; come to Me and drink freely of the Living Water. Whosoever will...please come!"
The seasons of your life will soon be gone. Confess that Jesus is Lord, believe with your heart, and reach out by faith to receive renewed life in Him...eternal life!
During retirement, my prayer is that I might serve the Lord by sharing the Gospel through my writing. As the Lord leads, my work will inform, challenge and encourage. I also enjoy Biblical theme woodcarving, Bible studies and Christian music. Watch, pray and keep looking up!