“He who believes in Me…out of his heart will flow… —John 7:38”
Jesus did not say, “He who believes in Me will realize all the blessings of the fullness of God,” but, in essence, “He who believes in Me will have everything he receives escape out of him.” Our Lord’s teaching was always anti-self-realization. His purpose is not the development of a person— His purpose is to make a person exactly like Himself, and the Son of God is characterized by self-expenditure. If we believe in Jesus, it is not what we gain but what He pours through us that really counts. God’s purpose is not simply to make us beautiful, plump grapes, but to make us grapes so that He may squeeze the sweetness out of us. Our spiritual life cannot be measured by success as the world measures it, but only by what God pours through us— and we cannot measure that at all. – Oswald Chambers
Some of the most sad and miserable people to be around are those who are self-aware. But the most happy and enjoyable people to be around are those who are Savior-aware. Years ago, I was asked to write some adult curriculum on “worship” and the Lord took me to Mary of Bethany. This woman came to Jesus totally Savior-aware. There was not a moment of her anointing His feet with the costly oil from her alabaster jar that indicated a self-awareness about her – a self-realization. She was not looking around the room to see who was watching; trying to read faces and body language to see how they were responding to her. She was not looking into anyone else’s eyes to see if they had approval for her. No, this dearly renewed woman had only one Person in her radar – and only one Purpose to her coming to see Jesus — to WORSHIP HIM! To worship!
And when she came, she broke! She literally broke a tangible item that only proved to reflect the brokenness of her life! She broke down to His feet to pour out her worship. She broke down to pour out her oil. She broke. And the broken flask could NEVER be restored. That is symbolic of the new life found in believing in Him! The old is gone and the new has come! And so we read, “He who believes in Me, out of his heart will flow…” – Believing, truly believing through faith in Jesus Christ, breaks the flask of our old life of self-awareness, and allows us to live not constantly looking at our own spiritual development, but living with a flow of all that He has poured into us, which is most seen in our day to day life of work. Our work is our highest form of worship because it is daily, it is a means through which He will pour Himself through us and into the lives of others. Separating work from worship is not the way of a true disciple.
When Mary of Bethany “broke the flask…of very costly oil…and poured it on [Jesus’] head,” it was an act for which no one else saw any special occasion; in fact, “…there were some who…said, ‘Why was this fragrant oil wasted?’ ” (Mark 14:3-4). But Jesus commended Mary for her extravagant act of devotion, and said, “…wherever this gospel is preached…what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her” (Mark 14:9). Our Lord is filled with overflowing joy whenever He sees any of us doing what Mary did— not being bound by a particular set of rules, but being totally surrendered to Him. God poured out the life of His Son “that the world through Him might be saved” (John 3:17). Are we prepared to pour out our lives for Him?
“He who believes in Me…out of his heart will flow rivers of living water”— and hundreds of other lives will be continually refreshed. Is a life of brokenness and worship what marks your day to day life of work?
Now is the time for us to break “the flask” of our lives, to stop seeking our own satisfaction, and to pour out our lives before Him. Our Lord is asking who of us will do it for Him? – Oswald Chambers
MORE WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS
Am I learning how to use my Bible? The way to become complete for the Master’s service is to be well soaked in the Bible; some of us only exploit certain passages. Our Lord wants to give us continuous instruction out of His word; continuous instruction turns hearers into disciples.