We went “swimming” on vacation. A lot. Of course this is different than the water aerobics class at the Y or the competitive swimming for the Olympics. This swimming is the kids in the pool with yours truly as their own aqua servant, launching pad, flotation device and personal swim coach. That was just at the pool.
The funny thing is my kids would have been 100% content to hang around the pool. But seeing as how we have a pool in our neighborhood that is quite large I reminded them that if Daddy wanted to hang out at a pool all week there was no need to drive 468 miles.
And so it was that I would drag them down to the beach where they would have fun, but with the constant longing to get themselves back to the pool so Daddy could throw them some more. (I was literally throwing them 5-6 feet in the air in canon ball formation, which meant I got a fairly sufficient upper body workout)
And so it was, water in the pool, water at the beach and for good measure it rained a couple days so water from above. With the humidity there was water in the air around which for a man of my size means water from inside. Our entire vacation was water centric. In fact I’m quite convinced that if my kids saw that stupid movie Water World with Kevin Costner that they would think that is a fine way for the world to end; in water.
As I sat down to write this at 11pm on Sunday night there was a special on CNN about clean drinking water around the world. I find it completely ironic that I’m sitting here writing about an absolute excess of water while this show was on in the background. I put my computer down and watched for a while. I needed to sleep on it.
There are 1 billion people in the world right now without access to clean drinking water. That’s the entire population of the Americas. The guy from UNICEF was heralding as a success the fact that just under10 million children died from diseases derived from unclean water. To get your mind wrapped around that number, realize that the population of Georgia, including Atlanta, is 9.3 million. So we could add Nashville to that picture and still be just under 10 million people.
It just reminded me that what we are doing at Conduit is important, and that the picture of what we’re doing is so appropriate. Not that you need reminding, but our name denotes being a pipe or conduit of Gods resources, power, and ministry from a place of plenty to places in need.
Jesus so often spoke in terms of water. At the last day of the Feast of Tabernacle, the last day of the water pouring ceremony that reminded the people of Israel of their time in the desert when water came from a dry rock, Jesus stood up and said That if anyone was thirsty they should come to him and drink, and that from them would flow rivers of living water. It said he spoke this of the Holy Spirit. (Luke 7)
Joel referred to the Holy Spirit as the former and latter rain. (Joel 2)
So what does it mean to be a conduit of the Holy Spirit to the World? To us in America where we have so much water that we vacation in it, we have no concept of this, but water is life. The absence of water means death from the most simple of means. Behind Malaria, the number 2 killer in the world is diarrhea brought on by water born illness. Something you and I look at as an inconvenience and a sickness that we make funny child hood songs about is the number 2 killer in the world. It ought not to be.
And so it is that Conduit is bringing water both literally and spiritually to the World. Jesus told the Pharisee’s in Matthew 23 that they shouldn’t focus all their energy on things like tithing and forget justice and mercy. He told them they should tithe but to keep justice and mercy on the front of their minds. He said that in the middle of the “woe unto you” chapter.
I don’t say that to bring guilt upon anyone. I don’t say that to get you to send Conduit money. I just know that we all (including me) need reminding of stuff we already know. If you haven’t been a Conduit of Gods resources lately, maybe ask Him today where he would like to you to stand. Where you can stand to release the life giving water of the Spirit or where you can release the life giving resources.
We do offer a simple solution if you’re feeling led right now. Conduit is a ministry that is devoted to this very thing. I have no idea who gives money. I believe that’s the way it should be. If you feel led you can go to http://www.myspace.com/conduitbiblestudy and click on the donate now link. We clean out the account once a month and send the money directly to our ministry partners who are on the front lines of justice and mercy.
But don’t just stop with the money. Don’t write a check and mark it off your list. Be the Conduit of the Spirit, of the rivers of living water. There are people all around who are desperately thirsty. You don’t have to go hand out tracts, or take some fancy witnessing class, just Love them, be kind to them, feed them, SHOW them God.
I’m so glad to get back in the saddle tonight. Hebrews 7 talks about that mysterious man Melchizedek. Paul holds up Melchizedek as something basic that we should all know about. The question is; why? What on earth for? Genesis 14 tells the story about this guy and that’s the last mention of him for 1,000 years till David makes mention of him in Psalm 110. If Paul hadn’t said that it would be quite easy to just skip right over him and get to the fun stuff with Abraham and Moses.
After tonight you’ll have a good grasp on who this guy was, what He represents, and probably most importantly why it even matters. If every word of Scripture is inspired and I believe it is, then Uncle Mel is an important guy to understand.
So tonight at 7:30! Journey Ecclesia at Building 8 in the Factory.