Like Vinegar

Like Vinegar
Isaiah 40:31, John 15:1-7

I recently purchased a vaporizer to add humidity to the air in my apartment, which got very dry in winter.  Upon reading the directions, I learned that the electrodes, which are placed in the water to create vapor, needed to be cleaned after every three uses.

After using the vaporizer for a few days, I soon discovered why this cleaning was necessary.  It is amazing the stuff that ordinary tap water contains!  I noticed a thick, white buildup on the electrodes.  It caused the vaporizer to work poorly after only a few days.  So I began scraping the buildup with a knife.  It was very hard, difficult to remove, and I thought I might bend or break the metal, so I stopped.

The instruction book, however, directed me to another way of cleaning the electrodes.  Immersing them in vinegar for a few hours, the booklet said, would remove the buildup.  I tried it, and found it to work well.

Today as I was performing this cleaning, I watched the vinegar at work. Bit by bit, the buildup slowly but surely broke loose from the metal and rose away.  As I observed this, the Lord spoke to my heart.  He said, "This is waiting on God."

Even while doing the most worthwhile work, we will soon become ineffective.  We need to be cleansed, refreshed, and prepared for future service.  But to do this ourselves, the world's way, is to scrape and scrape, and only do more harm.

God's way is to "immerse" ourselves in Him.  We cannot cleanse ourselves from the world's "buildup."  But through the gradual working of the Holy Spirit, we are cleansed and refreshed, just like the vinegar gradually removes buildup.

We "immerse" ourselves in God by waiting on Him - spending time in His presence, often in silence, just waiting for Him to perform His work.  Jesus said, "If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you." (John 15:7).  As we come into the presence of God, through quiet times of worship, prayer, and meditating on God's Word, God's Spirit cleanses us, transforms us, and prepares us for service.  This work sometimes seems very slow, but it is sure.  As long as we remain immersed, the work cannot be stopped.

May we be found often by God, seeking His presence and His working in us.

May the Lord Jesus Christ bless you richly.