Do you want to please God? Would you like your life to really count for something? Would you like to make a difference in your world? The secret is in Isaiah 58. (Actually, the principle is provided throughout the Bible, but I just came across it again today as I was reading this chapter.)
Isaiah 58 begins with what does not please God or lead to a productive life: being outwardly religious but with a heart that is far from God (see Matthew 15:8-9). Putting on a religious show means nothing to God. What pleases him is an inner commitment to him, a passion for living in relationship with him each day that then expresses itself through serving others. Isaiah is talking about overflow. Ministry naturally overflows out of the heart of a person who is spending time daily in communion with God and in community with others.
Isaiah 58:11 is one of the clearest passages in the Bible about this overflow principle:
God pours into my life (and yours) when I meet with him regularly. I’m like a plant that God is watering, nourishing with his abundance, which then produces fruit that feeds others. The life he pours into me keeps me spiritually hydrated and healthy … and only healthy organisms produce healthy fruit.
When I spend time with God, I am like an ever-flowing spring. It is ever-flowing because it is ever-resourced, ever-blessed.
Want to live a full, abundant, productive life? It all starts here. It’s not about you. Get rid of the notion that it has anything to do with your skills, talents, charisma, charm, knowledge, personality, pious superiority, or religious rituals.It has everything to do with your Creator and Provider and the relationship you have with him that is ever-flowing and overflowing!
How is God ever-flowing into you?
How is he overflowing though you?