Encouragement for Today - May 9, 2012
May 9, 2012
Letting God Fill My Empty Places
"You God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water." Psalm 63:1, NIV
It was a source she'd come to depend on. A place she went to get her needs met. But it was never enough; every day she came back for more.
Filling her jar with water, the woman looked up and heard Him ask her for a drink. Then He offered her something in return: living water. Unlike the water she came to get that day, He said the water He offered would satisfy her so deeply she'd never thirst again.
But she had a hard time believing His promise. "You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water?" (John 4:11) She asked.
What she didn't realize was that Jesus wanted to satisfy a deeper thirst in her heart — a longing He'd created to lead her heart to Him: the One and only Source that could satisfy her soul.
All He needed to draw with was His Spirit, for it would draw her near to Him. And as far as the depth of the well, it was her heart He was looking into. She was the only one who could stop Him from reaching the parts that needed Him most.
I know that place of needing Jesus to look into my heart and show me the emptiness only He can fill.
Like the woman at the well, I've depended on other means to get my needs met. Yet when I look to them, instead of Him, they are never enough.
I've looked to people: family and friends, bosses and boyfriends, teachers and mentors, my husband and kids. I've longed for their approval and the affirmation that comes with it.
I've also looked to possessions and positions and accidentally put my hope in recognition. I've thought "if only I had or could..."
But no matter how much I do or get, it's never enough to fill me up. And it's not supposed to be.
Why? Because the empty places in our hearts were created to be filled by God alone. The deepest thirst of our soul can only be quenched by Him.
We see this deep thirst even in King David, who had everything: the highest position, unlimited possessions, and great power, yet none of it was enough. He described himself as parched and thirsty for God:
You God, are my God, earnestly I seek you;
I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you,
in a dry and parched land where there is no water. (Ps. 63:1)
Then David went on to describe what he experienced when he drank deeply of God's love:
I have seen you in the sanctuary
and beheld your power and your glory.
Because your love is better than life,
my lips will glorify you.
I will praise you as long as I live
and in your name I will lift up my hands. (vv. 2–4)
And the same thing happened to the woman Jesus met at the well that day. She drank deeply of His love and was filled to overflow, and we can be too.
Just like the woman at the well, God put a longing in our hearts that was intended to lead us back to Him. Only His unconditional acceptance, approval and affirmation can fill the empty places in our hearts - the deepest thirst of our souls. Until God's love and acceptance is enough, nothing else will be.
Dear Lord, show me the empty places in my heart and ways I try to fill them. Then lead me back to You and show me how I can position my heart to be filled and fulfilled by Your promises and the power of Your love. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
How can we let God fill the empty places in our hearts each day? Visit Renee's website/blog for a practical and powerful way to identify your empty places and let God fill them on a daily basis. You don't want to miss it!
Letting God Fill My Empty Places a message on CD by Renee Swope
For more daily encouragement and powerful truths, join Renee's Confident Heart Facebook page.
Reflect and Respond:
Only God's unconditional acceptance, approval and affirmation can fill the empty places in our hearts - the deepest thirst of our souls. Until God's love and acceptance is enough, nothing else will be.
Ask God to help you identify your empty places and show you how HE can fill them. Click here for an illustration Renee shares of how she's learned to do this.
Psalm 143:8, "Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life." (NIV)
Jeremiah 2:13, "My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water." (NIV, 1984)
© 2012 by Renee Swope. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105