Stinking water is a sign of death. A putrid pond occurs because there is no intake of fresh water, no stream or bubbling spring that pours in to replenish and invigorate. Soon algae proliferate until the oxygen necessary to sustain life is slowly choked out and brown slime wins the day.
God is not a fan of stagnation. “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were cold or hot. So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I am going to vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I’m rich; I have become wealthy, and need nothing,’ and you don’t know that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked . . .” (Revelation 2:15-17). Stagnation begins when we think we are without need or we think only of our needs. We forget our utter dependence on God. Often our self-reliance is a subtle process of languishing. Truly, a sinful will cannot flourish. As we overlook the signs of our decay, we become calloused and insensate (witless and unfeeling).
The scary fact is that stagnation often occurs in the midst of religiousness. We become so content in form that we miss the Form-er. We feast on rote and rot. We read God’s Word “to check the completion block” and stroll into His throne with our memorized shtick occasionally wondering why heaven seems remarkably indifferent! We choose that which makes us comfortable and miss the very prodding God wants to deepen us. We abandon commitments to our brothers and sisters to appease our own interests. God help us!
Malachi 1:10—“I wish one of you would shut the temple doors, so you would no longer kindle a useless fire on My altar! I am not pleased with you,” says the Lord of Hosts, “and I will accept no offering from your hands.”
It is not a good thing when God wishes we would shut our temple doors, when He finds our living sacrifice detestable. These are not days to stagnate. The end approaches and there will be an accounting for our condition. Without repentance and a strong fear of God, there can be no revival or blessed nourishment from His living water. King David in stagnation’s abyss, cried out, “God, create a clean heart for me and renew a steadfast spirit within me . . . Restore the joy of Your salvation to me, and give me a willing spirit” (Psalm 51:10,13). Are you lethargic? Then cry out for God’s merciful hand to discipline you. Ask for His Holy Spirit to breathe upon your embers until they sustain that fiery joy that knows and relishes the privilege of walking in His presence. After all, God made you for rich river fellowship, not ponderous living.
If there is stagnation spiritually, never allow it to go on, but get into God’s presence and find out the reason for it.—Oswald Chambers inMy Utmost For His Highest
©2007 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)