Friday, November 15, 2013
Rivers of Living Water, Natural Springs, and Obedience
We went to conference on healing out of obedience to God. A couple months before we even decided to go I kept receiving the words, "rivers of living/flowing water" over and over again in scriptures, devotionals, etc. As we talked about attending the conference we kept feeling like God was using the waters reference as a sign. We were reading Teske's book, "Healing For Today" out loud to each other at the time. I had read it over a year ago, and felt strongly at the time that Joel would connect with this man and what he had to say. Fast forward 15 months later and while reading Teskes book we came across the title of one chapter that blew us away......"Rivers of Living Water". Paul Teske's wife is named Rivers! There it was, another sign. So being the good "let's make sure" kind of people we are, we laid out a fleece. This is not something we do very often, but we laid out a fleece and said to God...."Okay, God, IF you want us to drive clear across country to attend a small conference at a church we have never heard of with a pastor we have never met, you need to send us two or maybe three more times....the words Rivers of flowing water. He did. Within two days. So, with more than a little anxiety I registered us for the conference and began making plans.
As my regular readers know, this was a huge step for me. I had not stayed in a hotel for 15 years due to reactions. Then there was all the traveling.....and the conference...and.....the food I would need....and .....and.....
I cannot tell you how often friends prayed and even fasted for us before this trip. And how often God spoke to me to calm my fears and move us forward on this journey. God loves us so much He wants our cups to overflow with the blessings He has waiting.
God gave me the Elijah story where God tells him he needs to go to brook in a certain location and that the ravens will provide for his needs once he steps out in faith and goes. The provision was not going to come where he was, but where God had told him to go! This is exactly what happened with us. There were two times on the trip where I started to become ill. I shared the first, where we sat and prayed and the symptoms left for the whole trip. Then the Wednesday night we went to the healing service I was prayed over too, and afterwards when we walked out into the parking lot I was hit with a nauseating headache. This is not the way I get sinus headaches. They come on slowly....we felt this was spiritual and just stood our ground with it. I am unable to use any meds to help so God's Word was the medicine I used. The next morning we kept our plans for the beach and I held up most of the day.....but it was Friday morning that it suddenly left, never to return. We just kept standing on God's promise to provide our every need and he did.
During this time when I was receiving the waters references, a dear friend was praying for the trip and kept hearing Holy Spirit say that she was to tell me to drink from a natural spring. She kept
arguing with God and saying, "I can't do that, she will think I am crazy.!" The message would not leave so eventually she did share with me what she had been told. I remember saying, "Uhhhhh, you mean like literally drinking from a spring?" I was not feeling it at the time. Joel and I prayed about it and he said he believed it too. We were to find a spring to drink from. On the trip we researched where they were located (you can actually google ~ find a spring~ and come up with a website). Nothing was easy as we searched, so eventually Joel just told God, "Okay, God, make this easy on us and hard on you" and we quit looking.
On our way home we stayed once again at Shipshewana, this time for a couple of nights before heading to Iowa. When Joel was at the front desk he felt he should ask the clerk if she knew of any artesian well in the area, and she told him she would do some research for him! Turns out the custodian knew of a spring the Amish used that was just a few miles away he thought. Joel prayed for a confirmation, and later when Joel went to the gas station there was an Amish man on a bike that came in. Joel asked him if he knew of a spring. The man wanted to know where we were from and why we wanted to find one, so Joel shared his healing story and also shared that out of obedience we were going to this spring. Joel and the man had a great conversation on healing, the Bible, and being obedient to God. Of course Joel loved having a theological discussion with an Amish man....and as I shared before, he knew his Bible! Turns out the spring was just 4 miles away so off we went.
I wish I could say I walked right up to that pipe sticking out of the ground and said, "Thank you Jesus", taking a big gulp of water, but alas I looked at that pipe coming out of the ground and pumping a steady stream of water for the cattle and whatever humans were coming by to fill up their jugs and I freaked. I was sure I was going to get some strange parasite or bacteria....I said to Joel, "I think you better ask Holy Spirit if we are to boil this first!"
Joel laughed so hard, but did pray about it and then laughed harder. He said to me, "What I am hearing is this~~~~ I brought you here, now drink it!!!" Alrighty, then....... So I drank. **Please understand I did not drink from the metal tank you see, I drank from the faucet with the steady stream of spring water pouring forth! I wish I could say I felt something, but I did not. I truly think this was about obedience................although later we both came to a prayerful conclusion that some healing I did experience came from that step of obedience.
Stepping out in faith and going on this trip was liberating. The conference was life changing. Powerful. Drinking from the well brought us closer to God. We were blessed beyond expectation and the rest of the trip was much the same way. Amazing, fun, and we are still talking about it. I can hardly wait to tell you about NYC!