We went blueberry picking, my boys and I. It was late July, just when the summer heat decided the show itself. We went after the first day of school, a 2 hour day, looking for Hidden Springs Farm beside Hidden Springs Creek.
We drove 6 miles outside of town, winding through curvy roads, past a burned-out store, turning onto a road that spent itself into a one-lane gravel trail that made me wonder how they got to town in the winter.
We turned right onto a road that skirted a huge, dried-out creek-bed called Hidden Springs, moving closer and closer to the blueberry farm, an isolated place where someone could lose the outside world.
“Is there ever any water in the creek?” I asked the blueberry lady, as I handed out buckets to 3 boys and one, very sweet girl friend of The Teen.
In some seasons, it rushes with water, she said.
Hidden Springs Creek was empty. Silent.
“I saw the glory of the God of Israel coming from the east. His voice was like the roar of rushing waters, and the land was radiant with his glory” (Ezekiel 43:2))
No roar. No rushing waters. Just emptiness.
I’d had a dream once, where my family picnicked beside a dried-out creek bed. In my dream, I asked whether it ever flooded– and the guide (for some reason there was a guide) said, “Oh, sometimes it rushes in, over-spilling the creek bank, flooding the family home, washing everything clean.” In my dream, we were talking about the Holy Spirit –that the Holy Spirit had once flowed through my family.
For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring” (Isaiah 44:3).
That creek bed, that rushed with water in seasons, it made me thirsty. I felt the dry, dusty, cracked river-bed in my boys – and I wanted that rain, that Holy Spirit Rain for them, too. I wanted that season to be now.
“When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them” (Isaiah 41: :17).
I thought how cool it would be it would be if Hidden Springs Creek produced a flash flood of Spirit-filled water – kind of like the water that rushed, morphing into horse-shaped rapids in The Lord of the Rings. Something visual. Something Tangible. Something with a Wow-Factor that washes away any doubts.
But the Holy Spirit, it isn’t contained to river beds, creek beds and oceans.
There is a spring in each of us, a Holy Spirit spring – flowing, gushing with Living Water. For so many of us, though, it is a Hidden Spring. Because we don’t understand, we dam up that living stream available to us. We don’t let it wash through our life.
I’m like that with a lot of things. I didn’t use my kitchen Aid Mixer for years because I really didn’t understand what it could do for me. There are programs on my computer I don’t use because I don’t understand. I avoid what I do not understand.
Until, one day, someone said in a Sunday School class where we were talking about the Holy Spirit, “If God has more for me, I want it.”
That resonated. That loosened the foundation of the dam I’d built.
Paul prayed for people like me, who didn’t quite get the Holy Spirit. He prayed this prayer:
“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.
That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,
far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come” (Ephesians 1: 17-21).
I asked God – is this real? This Holy Spirit Power? The same power you used to raise Jesus from the dead? That’s available for me? In the tool box you gave me when I became your child?
Is it for me? Little me in the big world? The same Holy Spirit Power that fell on the day of Pentecost? That rose Jesus from the dead?
“but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:14)
And, if it is for me, can I not only have it. . . but show me how to turn it on in my life, so that the dry, cracked banks of my own Hidden Springs can rush to over-flowering with the Holy Spirit, cleansing me, filling me with energy, conviction, refreshing, helping me pray. . . and yes, praying in the spirit, if that is indeed real, too, for me, too.
I want some of that Living Water Jesus offered; I want that comforter He sent. But I don’t just want it. I want to use it. I want it to flow – not be dammed up behind my lack of understanding, traditions, a watered-down faith. I want my faith watered-up, flash-flooding, over-flowing, covering me, my family, my home.
The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail” (Isaiah 58:11).
I want those Hidden Springs loosed in me. What about you?