Something I think every human being longs for, is purpose. Whether that’s manifested through love in relationships, satisfaction in the workplace, or positive influence in the world around us, we’re all looking to find and give purpose. We want-to some degree or another-to impact and positively influence our friends and family, our community, and the world around us. Imagine with me for a second that we can divide these groups into tiers, like a fountain. You are the smallest tier, followed below by your friends and family (a little bigger), below that your community (bigger still), and below that the world.
For those us spiritual in nature, our goal is fill our tiers below, and contribute to the ultimate well being, in some sense or another, to our spheres of influence. Sometimes though, we go about things the wrong way. Sometimes we try to find our fullness and fill our spiritual selves up with the world, our community, and our friends and family. But unfortunately, just like in a fountain, water does not flow from the bottom up. There is no fullness we can find in the world, no fullness in our community, and no fullness even in our closest circle. The spiritual filling has to be poured out from the top tier down.
In us there is nothing than can fill us. We cannot find spiritual fullness in our selves. That fullness can only come from God. When God pours out the Holy Spirit into our lives, we become full and ready to overflow into the tiers below us. But even if we are full ourselves, we cannot fill others. The instance we pour out our fullness to fill others we face the danger of becoming empty again. The only way we can fill others is if we ourselves are being constantly filled. God never intends for us to give sacrificially and totally empty ourselves for the sake of others. While we are called to give, it’s God’s plan for our lives that we be connected to His spring of life that fills us without end.
At the same time, we must choose to flow or be stagnant. If we close ourselves off to the Spirit, God’s goodness and blessings cannot be poured out into our lives. When water sits closed off it becomes stagnant and diseased, but flowing water is fresh and full of life. We must be willing to give as openly and lavishly as we receive from God. When we open ourselves to the Spirit, God will pour so much into our lives that we will overflow, and begin to fill the tiers below us until all the tiers are filled and overflowing themselves.
God has designed us to be constant connection and communion with Him, drawing from His everlasting stream. He has designed us to be open recipients of His mercy, and to in turn, pour out His blessings through us to those around us. Living in the overflow means letting God’s riches and power be poured out into your life and overflow into the lives of those around you. There is joy in the overflow. There is contentment in the overflow. There is satisfaction, love, peace, purpose, and power in the overflow.
“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and love and peace because of your trust in Him so that you may overflow with hope and promise and goodness and purpose through the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
God help my to live in your overflow. Help me to openly receive the blessings you want to provide in my life, and to in turn, give just as generously to those around me. Help me to be drawn nearer to you and remain connected so that I may never be empty. Amen.