I have been thinking deeply (pun intended) about wells this past week. There is a well that provides water to my home and each of the houses in my neighborhood also rely on well water. This is not a unique situation as more than a million households in Virginia rely on wells to provide water, according to the Virginia Department of Health website. Wells are also mentioned quite frequently in the Bible as places of communal gathering, of God’s blessing and as places where critical characters meet their spouses (e.g., Jacob and Rebecca).
Wells also came up over the weekend when I attended a “Breakthrough Prayer” event in Culpeper, led by the Rev. Sue Nilson Kibbey. Rev. Sue led us in a series of stories that highlighted what she had come to know as God’s ability to breakthrough and do wonderful and marvelous works. She told us that when we begin to pray as though God were really Almighty–and like God was already at work in whatever situation for which we were praying, then we would find that God had made a way where there seemed to be no way.
After a half-day of providing us breakthrough stories of God’s work in the world–that she had witnessed–she ended with this thought from Mary Weber, “The well of God’s providence is deep, it’s the buckets we bring that are small!” Take a moment to read that again and let it sink in a bit before continuing on. (I’ll wait here for you…)
God’s providence, also known as God’s blessings for us, are present, abundant and will never run dry. It is indeed a deep well that we can access at any time we choose. It is also the case that we often come to the well of God’s grace unprepared to receive the fullness of what God offers. Think about it for a minute, if God’s well were an actual well, and you were traveling to it to get water for yourself and maybe your family, would you bring a 5-gallon pail? No, you would bring the largest container that you could haul so that you would get the most out of your trip!
How often we all settle for less than we should when we seek God’s blessings in our lives. We pray small prayers focused on the outcomes that we want to have occur in given situations. We don’t really trust that there is no limit to how much we can draw from God’s well of blessings. We also don’t pray like God is Almighty and present to all the people and situations for which we pray. We are limited by our small view of what God can and is able to do. What if, in addition to all the prayers we pray, we added a “breakthrough” prayer that acknowledges that God is supreme and capable of more than we can ever imagine?
We can breakthrough our limited view of God by adding a portion of the Lord’s Prayer (or Jesus’ prayer at Gethsemane) –“Lord, thy will be done.” This acknowledges that God has a plan and in actively working it. It acknowledges that God has a plan for us to live well and prosper, no matter the situation. It acknowledges that God alone is God and that we are not. It also allows us to bring bigger buckets to the well of God’s grace and to live beside the water of life.
The blessed assurance of a life lived in and with God is that we are always learning about God–a God who is always revealing God’s-self to us. When we trust that God’s love and blessings never run out for us or anyone else, then we can bring bigger buckets to the well. We can access unlimited amounts of God’s love and then pour out that love on all that we meet. If you’d like to experience the breakthrough power of God, then I invite you to come to one of our churches this week. Oh, bring a big bucket along with you to fill with God’s blessings to share.
Jackson Kennedy has been named to the Dean’s List of Distinguished Students at the University of Virginia College of Arts and Sciences for the fall semester. To be included among the dean’s list, students must demonstrate academic excellence and achieve a minimum 3.5 grade point average whil…
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