For there is hope for a tree, if it is cut down, that it will sprout again, and that its tender shoots will not cease. Though its root may grow old in the earth, and its stump may die in the ground, yet at the scent of water it will bud and bring forth branches like a plant. —Job 14:7-9 NKJV
I found this little, obscure verse tucked away in Job years ago and I’ve often thought that if I were to write a memoir about my life this is what I would call it…At the Scent of Water. As I’ve reflected on this verse over the years I am reminded that even though as a young child my innocence was stolen from me, and although it felt like a death blow, my heavenly Father had another plan….beneath the jagged marks, the numbness, the dead soul remained tender buds …. waiting for just the right time to begin to appear, to grow and to bloom.
I’ve always loved water and the analogy it offers. Woven throughout the Scriptures are word pictures of water….one speaks of my Heavenly Father, my Shepherd, leading me to water for rest and rejuvenation.
There is something special about the sound of the ocean and I find my soul is soothed by it. Last spring for the first time I got to swim in the ocean…it was awesome. Then one day when we went to the ocean a red flag was flying warning us that there were dangerous rip tides and undertows and we were to be extremely cautious. This reminded me of the enemy who at times designs rip tides and undertows to take us to the bottom. It’s at times like these that we find it difficult to regain our footing and find the peaceful waters….yet Jesus promises to steady us, to calm us and to right what is wrong.
Any time I get to spend near a beach or a bubbling brook offers my soul refreshment, inviting me to be still and hear the whispers of the Holy Spirit, summoning me to escape the chaos of the world and to simply sit at His feet and rest.
There is something too about the scent of approaching rain on a summer’s afternoon that whispers to us of God’s promise to refresh our parched souls.
And then there are those times when we feel like we are traveling in or feeling lost in the wilderness….yet it’s at these times as well when the Lord promises to open the door of hope….at the scent of water we become aware of, and begin to come alive, become alert to the endless new possibilities.
Water also speaks of cleansing….I find that there are many times when I need to come before my Lord and clean out my heart so that I can flow more freely with my Father.
How much would our lives change if we desired so desperately to have a passionate communion with Him in which we not only say prayers but in our actions do prayer!!
I read one time that the Celtic Christians refer to actual places where the veil between the natural and spiritual worlds seems thin…amazing!!
It’s with attentive spiritual eyes we learn to perceive and become aware of those times when God reaches out to us in our Red Sea experiences along our journey. It’s also at those times when we understand in our hearts that He has been there all along….and just like at the scent of water we begin to bud and bring forth branches like a plant…we blossom and flourish, we heal, and bring forth fruit for the Kingdom under the care of our Father. We are not left to die, we are not left to give up, to wither and waste away….we were made for life, we were created to live and live abundantly, to walk in healing and freedom….at the scent of water we bloom once again and offer a sweet fragrance and aroma that is pleasing to our Heavenly Father, the one who created us in His image.
Water offers life to the thirsty….and Jesus, our “Living Water” offers us renewal and new life….He is our life source, our life sustenance and essentially our “very life”!!