OK, so I know I talked a long time ago about how much faster times flies as you get older...well, for time to be going this fast I must be a million years old. I can't believe that it is almost July, which means Mark and I will be making our 1 year wedding anniversary soon. I can't believe the summer of 2011 is almost over. I can't believe I am 29 now - since my birthday last week. And I can't believe how much has been accomplished in the last few months.
God continues to amaze me at the rate He can do things, and how He can bring them about through the willing hearts of His people.
This past week we took Lee University to serve the community of Nueva Florida. We packed up the team and took off on the 3.5 hour drive - my co-pilot was Sam Williams. I hadn't had much time to talk with him since he had returned from his first year of college, so it was a great time to hear what was going on in his world.
We ended up on the subject of 1st Corinthians chapter 13 talking about the body of Christ and the definition of Love. He told me how those verses were challenging him to love better, love others like God loves us. It was really cool to see him growing in Christ and digging into the Word. Then he began telling me about a conversation he had with the Lord about a year ago, and it was so similar to what God had been speaking to me at that time as well.
I am not sure if I have already written about this on the blog - it may have just been a journal entry, but I think it is cool enough to share twice.
The question is, are you a pot or a pipeline?
For a long time there has been a great analogy taken from scripture that we are earthen vessels put here to carry "treasure" or God's Word to humanity. The word picture works for so many different circumstances, but I think the most common one is this: if you aren't spending time with God your pot is empty, and you don't have anything to offer to others. If you are full of the Spirit, you will have plenty in your pot to pour out as an offering to God by serving, ministering, and working for the Kingdom. You can even go so far as to say that if you hoard all of the blessings that God is pouring into you you, by not generously sharing whatever it is, that your pot will become stagnant, full of mosquito larvae, and it won't be any good to anyone.
What Sam and I both feel the Lord is trying to tell us, is that we need to step it up. There is a sense of urgency He is trying to covey by challenging us to turn our pots into pipelines. What do pipes do? They connect things, they bring a resource from where it is stored in point A to a place where it is needed at point B. What happens if you cut the bottom out of your pot? Everything will fall out, right? You have the potential to lose everything you have stored up. BUT what if you are simultaneously connected to the Lord in a way that you are constantly bursting at the seams? Your pipe stays full - you are being ministered too at the same rate that you are ministering to others.
The challenging part of that is it takes intentional connection with the Lord and with the people you are ministering too. Not to mention you can't be stingy with your time, talents or treasure because you will create a backup - a clog, and no telling how long that will take to repair. But I think the pros outweigh the cons. You are either full or empty, hot or cold - there is no lukewarm position. You know immediately when you need time with the Father because you feel the emptiness, the drop in pressure, the decrease in your output.
So ask yourself, are you a pot or a pipeline? You may not like the answer you get, in that case bring it to the Lord and ask for help. Or you may finally understand why God has been urging you on, challenging you to step it up. Time is of the essence!
It is all for His glory, all for the glory of the Lamb!