Tuesday, 7 January 2014

The River of Life

One day last week I was looking at something I wrote some time ago called 'The river of life' and thought that I might share it in a post on my blog.   I had put it in a little booklet that I had put together called 'And by the word of their testimony' which contains testimonies of experiences I have had over the years after coming to know the Lord.  Then, the following morning, I was reading chapter twenty five of the book of Job.   I have felt led to read a chapter of the book of Job each day because I feel that I have been in a 'Job' situation, having the enemy inflict more sickness and pain on me since I believe the Lord has told me that He will heal me from something I have had for over twenty five years.

As I came to verse 6 of Job twenty five I noticed that it read 'how much less man, who is a maggot, and the son of man, who is a worm!'.  The version of the Bible that I have is The New Oxford Annotated Bible.
I thought 'How strange, the article that I thought to put up as a post on my blog contains an incident concerning maggots and worms.'  So it has prompted me to share that article.



The River of Life
Jesus said 'If anyone thirst let him come to me and drink.  He who believes in me, as the scripture has said 'Out of his heart shall flow rivers of living water.'  We are told that He spoke this of the Spirit, which those who believed in Him were to receive after He was glorified.  We are also told in Ezekiel ch..47 that the river that flows from the temple brings life to every living thing where it goes and that there will be many fish in the waters that shall live because of it.  This indicates that the river of life is both in us and we in it.



I was on a photography course, and one of the women there had on a pink fleecy top with a zip up the front.  There was a tag on the zip shaped like a fish, it reminded me of the symbol that many people wear to identify themselves as Christian, and my first thought was 'Oh, I wonder if she is a  Christian?'  Then I noticed that the image was not really a fish but was actually the skeleton of a fish.  

When we went to lunch this lady bought some chocolate which, when she opened it, was found to have maggots in it.  When we returned to our lesson room, she told us of two fish she had bought which, when cut open, had tiny worms in them.  At the time we were also discussing Christianity and when I pointed out that it was strange that she had on her top a fish skeleton and she was experiencing finding worms and maggots in fish and chocolate, she said 'Maybe that's where I am going, down where the worms will get me.'



This incident made me think of how, as a Christian, I must be careful what I 'eat'.   I thought about how I could be robbed of spiritual growth, represented by the fish skeleton on the zip. The chocolate with the maggots in maybe representing allowing myself to just carry on 'eating' the goodies of this world, and what my carnal mind desires, and the two fish with the worms in them representing worldly doctrines within the Christian church (the fish being a symbol of Christianity).

However, it was not until I read the 6th verse from Job ch.25, relating man to maggots and worms that I could fully understand what the Lord was trying to show me through this incident, that I could wear the name of 'Christian', but still be 'carnal' depending on what I choose to feed upon.

When Daniel was taken to Babylon he refused to defile himself with the rich food and wine offered to him,  it was not permitted for the Jew to eat other than their own diet.  The word Babylon in the Hebrew language includes the word that means confusion, so Babylon in spiritual understanding can represent a place of confusion.  Babylon was particularly noted for being a place of pride and idolatry.   The church, as God's Israel, has its own spiritual diet in the form of God's word, and just as Daniel shone with physical health as a result of not eating what the Babylonian king offered, so too the church will shine in spiritual health as a result of eating Gods word revealed to us through Jesus, and not through doctrines fashioned to please the carnal mind.


If we try to be doers of the word spoken to us as individuals in Christ, then we can be likened spiritually to those fish that live in the sea where the river of life has gone.  They eat, drink and breathe the substance of that water in order to continue living.




Shortly after being on my photography course I was at a writers' meeting that I attended monthly, and I felt very strongly that I was to leave early to watch a television program on 'Time'.  One thing stood out to me in it.  Scientists have discovered, through research into the genes in our bodies, that there is no program for death in us.  There is a program in us for life and for maturity, but no program for death.  Right from creation we were meant to have eternal life with our creator.  It was only Adam's sin that induced a God given curse, which was fulfilled outside of the unique garden of blessing in which he had been placed after being formed from the dust of the ground.



The following is the poem that I wrote at the time.


River of Life

Oh river of life restore to me
the glory that was meant to be

Flow through this doubting, troubled heart
refreshing each and every part
that fails to recognize the name
of Holy Lamb that once was slain
for all I do to cause Him pain

Wash every evil carnal thought
with grace and love that Jesus bought

In waters of eternity
cause spirit lost to struggle free
to cast aside the filth and shame
that clings so tight to mortal frame
once more to wear the Father's name

Oh river of life restore to me
the glory that was meant to be


We are told that once he had sinned and felt convicted, Adam found himself 'naked'.    I believe this 'nakedness' also stands for the loss of eternal life and the being clothed with mortality.  In 2 Corinthians ch.5 v.4 we are told by Paul that 'we wait not to be unclothed, but to be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.'  For two thousand years, because of our Lords wonderful sacrifice, the river of life in the form of the Holy Spirit has been flowing from the temple, enabling us to be no longer under that curse, and to be reconciled back to God.  If we swim in those waters of life, eating and drinking only what is provided in those waters, we shall truly live as we were meant to.


32 comments:

child of God said...

Hi Brenda,
We need to be so careful what we read, watch and listen to because what we feed our mind is what we become. Trying to instill these morals into teens today is tough because the media is full with unhealthy things and young people are so drawn to them or if they try to avoid them they are still lured because it is everywhere and being pounded at them. :(

Beautiful poem.

Blessings,
<><

Brenda said...

Hi child of God,
yes, as a man thinks so he is, but it is lovely how God has a way of speaking to the individual through the Holy Spirit once He has called them. When we are truly shown the love of God and the lies of the enemy, then we know which One to turn to. Looking at my own past life before coming to know Jesus I know there is nothing that God can not rescue us from, and if we have been through similar things as the people God brings across our path then we have understanding of what is in their lives. The Holy Spirit in us is able to bring forth fishes after our own kind.
God bless

Frank Blasi said...

Dear Brenda,
I was surprised to read of your friend's double experience in finding maggots in chocolate and in fish.
I would guess that with modern tough quality control in factories where such products are processed, they would have eliminated such phenomena, but again it can be argued that the eggs from which they hatch are so small, they can easily slip through the net.
Let me say thank you for your regular commenting on my blogs. I greatly appreciate this.
God bless.

Patrinas Pencil said...

Brenda,
once again...a deep message. weird and confusing with the maggots and worms...but you nailed it when you read JOB...WOW! nothing confusing about this clear message...

"I could wear the name of 'Christian', but still be 'carnal' depending on what I choose to feed upon."

I was so excited to hear this too, I had missed this bit of discovery...

"Scientists have discovered, through research into the genes in our bodies, that there is no program for death in us. There is a program in us for life and for maturity, but no program for death. Right from creation we were meant to have eternal life with our creator. "

AMAZING!! VALIDATION!...CONFIRMATION!

"Oh river of life restore to me
the glory that was meant to be'!!

Amen!
Loved the poem..loved your whole post!

blessings

Brenda said...

Hi Frank,
We were all amazed to see maggots in a bar of chocolate. As for worms in the fish, I found out later that there are worms in fish. One site on the internet explains it this way

'The 'cod worm', which is often found in cod, is also found in many other species. Its scientific name is Phocanema decipiens; other outdated scientific names are Porrocaecum decipiens or Terranova decipiens. It grows up to 4 cm long in fish, and varies in colour from creamy white to dark brown. It is frequently found in the flesh of fish, particularly in the belly flaps, where it often remains for long periods curled up and encased in a sac-like membrane produced by the fish tissue.'

The whole incident was meant to speak to me spiritually, and it was so amazing that the Lord had me to read Job ch.25 at the time that I was thinking maybe I would put the article I had written years ago about 'Living water' on my blog.
God bless you and Alex, I hope she is improving in health.

Brenda said...

Patrina,
I have had many incidents where things have linked together over a period of time, sometimes a short time, sometimes longer. I think it is just the way the Lord teaches me things. Everybody is different, but the message never changes.
God bless you, it is lovely to see you back blogging again, you are so spiritually minded.

Laurie Collett said...

Dear Brenda, It is an inspiration to hear how you combine meditating on His Word with being attuned to the spiritual meaning and symbolism of what is happening around you. Thank you for sharing this with us, and may God continue to bless you and your ministry,
laurie

Brenda said...

Hi Laurie,
Thank you for your encouraging words.
I believe that God gives us all different things to do, as He has brought you to do what He wants you to do, and confirmed it with scripture in your new church,and you have a heart to do what the Lord is wanting you to do.
It is not for us to question is it Laurie, only for us to be obedient. It is the Lord who has the full picture, we are only the jig - saw pieces to be fitted into that picture by His hand.

God bless you in what He has given you to do Laurie.

Never Forsaken said...

Brenda, I read this post a couple days ago, but so much manifested in my mind at the thought of the woman with the skeletal fish and the maggots and worm...I honestly was reminded of something that I experienced recently.
When they did the biopsy of the cancer...I was shown the sample...and it looked like a worm! Just like I always imagined a cancer would look (even though it was only a piece of it).
And the thought of one of Christianity's oldest symbols being 'mimicked' by a representation of death instead of life...It just made me feel sort of sick to my stomach.
The fact that the woman wanted others to eat something that she thought would have been a treat to share (though I'm sure she did not know it had gone bad)...Just reminded me of how satan tries to feed us poison that looks good on the outside until you either open it up, or eat it without examining it first!
When I do chemo, I will be drinking lots of water in order to help flush the toxins from my system after each dose...The river of life that flows from the Lord cleanses the poisons from our spirits...all those little things that we have ingested either by will or unknowingly.
I enjoyed your poem :)
Love you, my dear friend~ Lisa

Brenda said...

Hi Lisa,
the spiritual message to me through this incident was to simply eat the and drink what the Lord was providing through His word to me. The chocolate that the lady bought was representing the temptations of this world, and she did not know that the maggots were in it until she opened it in front of us. The Lord is well able to teach us the difference between satans' temptations to try to draw us away from the Lord, and our learning through the Holy Spirits' teaching takes time. I have found that all the incidents that have happened in my life to reveal things to me have only been done for my welfare, not to harm me, to teach me and strengthen me in my trials. The Lord loves us and because satan is a spiritual enemy the battle is spiritual, and the Holy Spirit makes us able to discern spiritual things. You have no need to fear because the Lord is well able to heal you. Amen to what you have said about the river of life Lisa, and hold fast to that which the Lord has spoken to you, not to what your eyes have looked upon in the sample of the biopsy. His promise to heal us from all our diseases is 'yes' in Jesus.
may God bless you my lovely sister in the Lord speedily with a completely healing.

Sateigdra L Knowles said...

I enjoyed reading this post Brenda. Was feeling a bit sad recently. I was just about to head to bed but clicked on blogspot becuase I wasn't sure if i was on for the year yet, and I wondered maybe if you posted anything new.

It's always nice to read your posts and this post will leave me with something to ponder on as I go to bed. It's almost 12 am here, so I think it's about 5 am over ther at this moment. I'm going to bed now. God Bless you Sister Brenda. :-)

Brenda said...

Sateigdra,
it is lovely to hear from you. I was thinking about you yesterday morning, and wondering how you are. I hope your sadness will pass soon. I too get sad at times, and that is when I think of how it would be to be sad without Jesus to turn to. He is the light that came into my darkness, the friend that comes into loneliness and the comforter above all other comforters. Whatever trials we are faced with Sateigdra, He is able to bring us through them and make us stronger.
God bless you.

Alex Horton said...

I enjoyed the poem and there were a lot of good points in this post. However, you do have to be careful when reading Job because a lot of it is what Job's so-called friends said to him before God came and corrected them.

Brenda said...

Hello Alex,
nice to meet you. Yes that is right, Jobs so called friends had their own opinions about God didn't they. The part from Job in my post was simply referring to the words 'maggots and worms' and fitted so well regarding 'earthly things' at the exact time of my thinking about posting the article from years ago about . We have to discern what is of God and what is of man, and the book of Job is a good book for emphasizing this.

Alex Horton said...

OK, Understood.

Sola Scriptura said...

I was really blessed reading your River of Life poem. Thank you so much for sharing!

Brenda said...

Hi (I believe it is Lauren),
you are very welcome, and thank you for sharing the beautiful pictures and the scriptures on your blog.

Just Be Real said...

Hey Brenda, warm welcome to you i this new year. Thank you for sharing. Blessings.

Brenda said...

Hi Grace,
and a very warm welcome to you this new year. I hope you are well and that the Lord will add blessing upon blessing to you this year as you put your trust in Him.
God bless you my friend

Laurie Collett said...

HiBrenda, I like your metaphor of the puzzle pieces. Praise God that He has fitly framed every believer together as stones in His building, as body parts each unique yet all essential to the functioning of the whole. May God bless you and your writing,
Laurie

Ceil said...

Hi Brenda! What a beautiful post! I was really impressed by the idea of the worms and the fish. I think I often will do something that seems like a good idea, and that's only the covering. It's really filled with 'worms'. Always better to talk to the Lord, and stay in his wonderful river.

So good to see you again! I am at a new blog place, www.ceilryan.com
It was a big move, but I hope to love it.
Happy Tuesday :)
Ceil

Brenda said...

Hi Laurie,
I can't remember which post I put about jigsaw puzzle pieces, but I have written an article on this. If I haven't put it on my blog yet I will post it on. I love the way that everyone has been given different gifts and are used uniquely within His church according to His instruction.
God bless you.

Brenda said...

Hi Ceil,
lovely to see you back again, hope the new grandchild is well, mother too. Yes, I am forever learning from the Lord through what He shows me, as all of us are, and will be until I leave this earth or He returns. What I have found to be true is that there is no experience in my old life that can compare to knowing Him.
Will visit your blog soon, just got in from spending time with relatives, lovely day.
God bless

Susan said...

Hi Brenda! I've seen your comments on various blogs, and today I stumbled onto your blog...and similar to your "seeing" I too see the Lord speaking to me in my circumstances. I know if it is from Him if it conforms to His word to us (the Bible) and I love the surprises, the gifts, treasures, that He surprises me with along my path.

I am nominating you for the Liebster Award…just a fun game that will help others know a little more about you, and then about some of the blogs that you would like to recommend for others to discover…check out my post here:
http://susanflutterbys.blogspot.com/2014/01/for-little-fun-liebster-award.html
Let me know if this isn’t something you want to do

Brenda said...

Hi Susan,
it is good to meet you. I don't really know that much about the internet, only the basic things about blogs, so I am not sure what the Liebster Award involves. It is nice of you to nominate me but if it involves me doing a lot of things that I am not used to I may make a hash of it. I will leave it to you.

Sateigdra L Knowles said...

Thanks for these words of encouragement Brenda. My sadness has gone away. I have much to be glad for, i only would like it if i focused more on the things to be glad about, rather than the things that make sad. My weaknesess and failures sadden me deeply at times, but when i am reminded of the faithfulness and goodness the Lord has toward us, then i begin to feel better. Truly His words are a comfort during my affliction.

Brenda said...

Hi Sateigdra,
so glad your sadness has gone. As I read your comment one of my poems came into my mind.

Always remember the good things in life, don't dwell on the things that are sad. For life is a diary of memories, some good - some bad. But just remember there's purpose in all, whether joyful or peppered with pain. And though storm clouds for now may have darkened your skies, soon the sun will break through once again. So just rest in the thought that God cares for us all and holds each of us in His great hand, as He guides us and comforts us, both great and small, til we all reach that promised land.

God bless you Sateigdra.

Sateigdra L Knowles said...

Thank you so much for sharing that wonderful poem with me Brenda, it's very encouraging. And may God Bless you too. :-)

Stephanie said...

Hello dear Brenda! First of all, I am sorry for not visiting you sooner as life has been somewhat busy as of late :) I do hope you're doing well and enjoying the new year. Can you believe it's already the end of February?!

Thank you for this encouraging post and for sharing such a wonderful poem. It is such a blessing to visit other ladies in blog land and to be able to leave their blog feeling renewed and refreshed by God's Word.

May your week be full of joy and blessing, sweet lady :)

Brenda said...

Hi Stephanie, please do not apologize for not visiting sooner. Busy is the story of my life, but I should be able to spend more time on my blog after tomorrow. Thank you for your kind words, I love writing, sharing testimonies and visiting other people's blogs - I feel it is an on-line church gathering with lots of tips and cookery thrown in. I have spent most of today getting rid of infections on my computer. I have learned a bit more today about only downloading necessary updates and the best way to do it. The older I get the more I find I am doing the lovely things I never had time to do when I was working.
May your week be full of joy and blessing too.

Laurie Collett said...

Hi Brenda,
We saw a lovely dancing fountain today, and the springs of water and clouds of fog floating over the pool surface reminded me of the Living Water and the Spirit. May God bless you as you bless others with your spiritual insights and lovely writing,
Laurie

Brenda said...

Hi Laurie,
how beautiful,
and the dancing fountain reminds me of you and your lovely ministry. I removed infection from my computer yesterday with Malware and it reminded me of how the devil is being removed from the scene through the Holy Spirit.
God bless you.