A while back, I started praying for God to pour into me, so I could pour out on others. I went so far as to ask that when He pours into me, He fills me so full that when I pour back out, I don’t run dry…I stay full.
I talked with my accountability group about this concept. I talked about how when I operate in my God-given gifts, I feel this happening. Since my thought process is somewhat different from a lot of people's, I am not an off-the-cuff person. Thoughts and ideas must stew and marinate in my brain. But when I am speaking about something, it’s different. My thoughts will sometimes come quicker than I can verbalize them.
This happened as I was talking with my group about this concept of praying to be filled and not empty out as I pour out. The thought of cycles came to mind and then it hit me; this process of God filling, me pouring, and never running empty is a “Grace Cycle”! To me, it looks something like this…I pray for filling, God fills, I pour out His anointing, and others are blessed, which in turn keeps me full, then I pray again for the continual filling and the cycle continues.
As I operate in my gifts from a place of service, I have found I can’t out-give, out-pour, or out-bless. God continually honors my giving, pouring, and blessing. This is His purpose in me.
While talking about this with my group, I thought about the widow and the oil in 2 Kings 4: 1-7. She was in trouble with debtors and was about to lose her sons to them. She went to Elisha and stated her case. She appealed to him on her dead husband’s honor and that he had feared the Lord. Elisha asked her what she had and finding she only had a flask of oil gave her simple instructions. Borrow all the empty vessels you can find, go into your house, close the door and with your sons pour out from the flask and fill each empty vessel completely, to the top.
The widow did what Elisha told her to do and from a small flask of oil filled enough vessels to sell the oil and pay off her debtors. She poured out until she had filled all! I have often wondered if she ran out of neighbors to ask or if she stopped when she felt she had enough vessels to meet the need she had. I know that is not the lesson here, but I still wonder. If she had doubled the number of vessels would she have been “set for life”?
But you see, the thing is, sometimes when we are “set for life” we quit asking, we quit praying, we quit needing God. So…daily though I may be full from yesterday’s blessings, I must make it a point to ask for filling again. I must ask daily for the Holy Spirit to walk with me, make me aware of what is going on around me, to show me the small lessons in life that I can pass on and bless others with.
The other part of this, aside from the ask to be filled is the pouring out. I must pour back out. If the widow had asked but not poured, she would have first been in disobedience to Elisha’s instructions and second, she would have lost her sons. When we ask for filling, we must pour it back out. We must share what the Spirit has given us. It is never for us to greedily pack away and hold onto for our use only.
When we do this, we will run dry. We will be like those vessels when the window first borrowed them from her neighbors. They were empty until she poured the gift from the flask into them. The gift of Oil. The gift of Anointing. The gift of the Spirit.
I encourage you today to find your “Grace Cycle”. What do you need a constant pouring from the Holy Spirit for? A pouring that will not run dry no matter how much you pour it out in blessing onto those around you. Those you are called to minister to and to serve. Then as you are filled, pour out. Be lavish in your pouring. Pour out until you feel you have nothing more to pour. I believe when you do, you will find you never run dry.
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