Editor's Note: The following is a report on the practical applications of Steve Sjogren & Dave Ping's new book, Outflow: Outward-Focused Living in a Self-Focused World, (Group Publishing, 2006).

 

Imagine that your life is a fountain. If you focus mostly on yourself, you’ll be too dry or clogged up to flow properly. But if you shift your focus to other people, the living water of God’s love will flow through you to your family, friends, and others throughout your community and the world.

 

Here’s how you can let God’s love flow through you:

 

* Invite God to fill you up. Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you. Then rely on His power and wisdom in your everyday life. Depend on God’s unlimited strength instead of your own limited strength. Recognize that God Himself will provide all the living water your fountain needs to overflow into other people’s lives.

 

* Remember your blessings, and ask for new ones. Make time to write down some memorable ways God has blessed you – including some blessings that came in disguise. Think about how those blessings have shown you God’s love in action. Thank God for specific blessings He has already given you, and don’t hesitate to ask Him for new ones.

 

* Let your selfish ways decrease so God will increase within you. Ask God to help you change selfish thought and behavior patterns. Pray about each of them specifically. Don’t depend on your own efforts or look to other people to find true fulfillment. Remember that God is the only reliable source of fulfillment.

 

* Offer your treasure to God. Recognize that God placed such a high value on you that He was willing to die for your sins so you can be reconciled to Him. Honestly ask yourself what your relationship with God is worth to you. Consider what you treasure most in your life – time, money, family, friends, your work, or something else. Then think and pray about how you can offer that treasure to God by using it to serve Him.