A River Life Perspective

by | May 13, 2024 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

In the last post, Living a River Life, I discussed the life-producing power of rivers and what they can teach us about how to live. Like a river, our lives can produce more life wherever we go. However, this requires being connected to a source of “living water”, allowing us to continue to flow and live a living water kind of life. The more you choose to live a life overflowing with living water, the more the life-producing river streaming from you will grow. How would our lives and the world be different if we each intentionally chose to live this way?

This is a question and image on which I have been dwelling recently. Going back to the picture of a river, as it grows so does it’s affect on the ecosystem around it. At times, one river splits, multiplying the environments it feeds as the new rivers or streams distribute it’s life-producing water. As the reach of the water grows, so does the potential for more life. The same can be said for our lives.

Imagine a world in which we each decided to live lives that overflowed with living water. What if we viewed life through that lens? As an opportunity to bring life and renewal as we go throughout our day. It does not have to something “big” as the world defines it. It just requires the intention of asking, “how can I produce more life as I live mine?” “How can I allow the living water I have received to flow out of me into the lives and communities I touch?” Whether practically or spiritually, being open to sharing the life you have been given can have far reaching effects.

It might start out small, like a stream, as you invest in the life of one other person. Your investment, sharing the overflow of your living water, starts to produce new life in them. A new river begins to slowly build as they are filled with living water. Not only does this extend the flow of life-producing water, it fills you up as you experience the multiplying effect of giving your life away. What started as a small stream is now growing into different rivers.

Now, what if it did not stop there? What if that was just the beginning? It is possible! Your “small investment” of the living water you have been given has led to another person filled with living water. As this pattern continues, one life impacting another, rivers of living water will begin to spring up, bringing life to places and people previously stuck in a desert of hopelessness. As the number of “rivers” flowing with living water build, environments begin to change. Like the lush green color that typically surrounds a river, evidence of new life begins to spread. As the life-producing living water advances, people and communities begin to change. What once was hopeless becomes hope-filled.

I have seen this take place in communities in Nicaragua and the United States. The impact is incredible. People discover their true identity and potential, families find reconciliation, needs are met, communities experience thriving, and so much more. When people are committed to living lives that overflow with living water everything changes.

I believe most, if not all, people would vote for a community like that. We all desire to thrive, even if we do not always agree on how to get there. It is possible, but it requires a choice. If we each choose to live lives from which living water flows, the world can be a different place. Overflowing with living water requires connection to the source. A river can only provide what it has received. However, once connected your life can produce life in others, potentially reaching further than you would imagine.

A world filled with people living out of a “river life” perspective would be a different place. While we may not be able to “change the world” on our own, we can choose to change the way we live. We can choose to live a “living water” kind of life, producing more life wherever we go. Who knows how far that life might flow!

James Belt

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