Some thoughts about rivers

19 Mar

I used to be a Geography Teacher and I used to sometimes teach about rivers. Here are some thoughts i have been having lately about rivers - although I don't think they would often be mentioned in a standard Geography lesson!

Rivers often begin in quiet remote isolated places where the snow on tops of mountains begin to produce water high up in the mountains. Often a hidden secretive beginning even underground such as a hidden spring. 

In the same way when God's spirit is going to begin a work you can usually trace it back somewhere to those who had a secret hidden life of prayer with the Lord and where they waited on Him in quiet places.

Often little separate trickles begin to slowly join up together and flow together and contribute to a larger growing combined stream.

In a similar way when saints begin to pray together and minister their individual contributions their combined 'streams' help a greater river begin to flow. Psalm 46 verse 4 says "There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God". Church is not a one-man band ...  but a body of believers praying together as individual contributions flow into one. 

Often a river may drop out of view for a while, but when it re-emerges it is more mature, wider and deeper than ever before. A friend recently shared with me how some rivers pass underground for a while - and when they re-emerge they re-emerge purified by the rocks through which the waters have passed.

This Coronavirus crisis is an opportunity for us to become much more 'relational' with one another through telephoning each other and through having the time to stop and care and communicate more (even if it lacks our physical presence together!) 

It may prove to be a bit like a river dropping out of view for a while whilst all of our usual church activity has had to cease. 

We also trust that during this time of lessened outward activity - that quiet prayers will more frequently arise - and that there shall be times when people join their 'streams' together in prayer - for e.g. at virtual online prayer meetings. 

I think this time we are passing through, though strange and difficult,  is an exciting opportunity to develop prayer and to develop relationally both with the Lord and with one another.

The river is going to emerge stronger - not weaker.

It is also  good to remember that when a river meets an obstacle - it does not impede it for long. A river will in the end either remove an obstacle - or more often that not, simply find a way around it.

In these restrictive times may you find the blessings of God's river and know that the Lord is sovereign.

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