Greetings once more Friends everywhere!
Readers of my Blog are familiar with the metaphor I use for living life in the Triune Being of God as believers of Jesus Christ. It’s called “Bula man-river.”* This is also the title of my Book which you can obtain more information via my website: www.bulamanriver.com. The slogan and watchword for this Blog site is given in the masthead above: “Whoever believes in me…rivers of living waters will flow from within them.” This is taken from John 7:38. It’s on this passage of Scripture that the name “Bula man-river”* originated and is substantiated. What I would like to share with you in this post is to answer, where and what is the source of this “living waters” which flows in man, and makes him a “Bula man-river.”*
River with Living Waters – Metaphor for God’s Undying Love (Wiki Commons)
In my Book, I use the River as the metaphor for man and the believer. A River is made up of two parts. There’s the riverbed, and there’s the water which flows through it. Think of yourself as the riverbed – you are the riverbed. Think of the water as the flow of God’s Life and Love in your life. “God is Love,” the Bible tells us in 1 John 4:8. So, God is flowing in you. Now a riverbed is not a River without its waters. And by the same token, the water has to have a riverbed for its vessel. Hence, the two complement and complete each other. One cannot live without the other. The riverbed represents man’s physical existence, and the water represents God’s divine existence in man. I will quote from a passage from my Book which bears the same title and explains the source of “living waters” which makes man a full-flowing River or Bula man-river* with the power of the Spirit. (John 7:38-39)
“I want to share a beautiful story about man’s new beginning as a Bula man-river*. A visitor was once invited to visit a majestic sanctuary. His escort, a learned individual, took him to see the beauty of the massive imposing structure and exquisite surroundings. The visitor confessed that in all his life he had never seen a place as beautiful and majestic, and he was truly lost for words. Then he was told the purpose of his visit. The escort showed the visitor a breathtaking stream flowing from beneath this magnificent structure. The visitor was amazed to see this and wondered how and why a stream could flow from beneath this structure.
“The escort beckoned to follow him along this gentle flowing stream. Then, to the visitor’s surprise, he saw his escort take out a measuring device and measure 560 yards from the building. He asked the visitor to wade through the water and tell him the depth of the stream. The visitor replied that it was ankle-deep. The escort went farther and measured 560 more yards down the stream. He asked the visitor, “Please tell me its depth.” This time the visitor replied, “The water is up to my knees.” He repeated the exercise a third time and the visitor replied, “The stream has become a river, and the waters are up to my waist.” The fourth and final time he told the escort the stream had turned into a wide, deep river that could only be crossed by swimming.
“This story is taken from the prophet Ezekiel in the Bible (Ezek. 47; Rev. 22:1-2). Rivers are spoken of metaphorically as God’s people who flow out to give provision to communities. Notice that wherever this river flowed, it brought life: “So where the river flows, everything will live” (Ezek. 47:9). The escort is an angel of God, and the visitor is you, the Bula man-river.*
“The waters gushing from under the threshold of the awesome structure is the “living water” originating from the very throne of God and flowing in the life of the Bula man-river.* The measurements, carried out by the escort, portray man’s life as it’s lived in the love and generosity of God, from start to finish. Each of the four stages of measurement indicates a different phase in life, from a fledgling stream only ankle-deep to a full-fledged Bula man-river* that is forded only by swimming. The words of John the Baptist are relevant here: “He must increase but I must decrease” (John 3:30, NKJV) as we move from our present place as babes to an even larger place as we mature into full-grown people through the creative action of the Spirit (1 Pet. 2:2; 1 Cor. 3:1-2; Eph. 4:13-14; Heb. 6:1-3). People are always in search of rivers, just as civilizations have always been built around them; they may not know it, but they are. You are that river. There are people you are going to touch in life – people who are waiting and searching for a river that can sustain them with its refreshing and miraculous “living waters” only you will give and share.
“God’s desire is to see His Son increase in our lives through the flow of His grace by His Spirit (John 16:14). We will not stagnate and die. Rivers never do. Flow or hydrology is the key to life. It starts at the throne of God and overflows your banks. The miracle life emerges from man’s union with the triune God, in Jesus, by the power of the Spirit. God, our Father, gives us an insight into the gift He gives to each one of His children. Man has forgotten or is unaware of who he is – he is the gift. Just as the riverbed is not a gift without its waters, so God’s gift to man is not a gift without the Spirit of “living waters” flowing in him (1 Tim. 4:14). So then, if the gift is the man, because of the “living waters” flowing in him, it is logical to conclude that man, as the Bula man-river,* is his own gift for each other (Luke 6:38).
Man is The Riverbed, The Spirit is “Living Waters” (Wiki Commons)
“History tells us that each time God wants to reach humans He uses other people as His medium of communication. The idea God puts across is that he includes man in His triune life, and man is a blessing for each other through the gift of God in them. The reason for this is obvious: it reflects His own triune nature and love of living as ONE. He made this clear when He gave us His Son, so He too had to adopt His own humanity, thereby using the medium of humans as a blessing to humans through His life, death, resurrection, and ascension.
“The gift is not some illusive “buried treasure” we search for all our lives. You are the attractant for the miraculous life you’re ordained to live because of the gift flowing in you. There is no “fountain of youth.” This is it, and it flows from the spring under God’s temple into your life. Most importantly, it is free. All you do is, ask. This is our birthright as humans created in God’s image and likeness. You have heard the common saying, “If it is too good to be true, it probably is.” Sadly, we translate that affirmation in our relationship with God, and we falsely believe everything has to be earned, including His love. This fearful world, to emphasize its ungodly idea, coins another common phrase: “there is no such thing as a free lunch.” People who make such affirmations have no clue how this “too good to be true” life comes to man. It is made possible for one reason and one purpose only, and no other: we are made to be ONE with God, even as He is ONE in His triune nature of love. What connects us to the God who makes things indeed “too good to be true” is the Bula man-river* that makes our union with Him possible. God’s love is free; it is priceless and cannot be bought.”
“To “flow” means motion or action. Action means the present. Flow is not an act from the past, nor is it in the future; it is now; it is in this moment in time. God exists in the present, so when it comes to hydrology, yesterday is today’s memory and tomorrow is today’s dream. Today is today and it can’t be anything else because of its “flow” and motion. The flow of the Bula man-river,* as represented in the story in Ezekiel, explains the river’s work in the depths of God’s love. Starting from ankle depth, it progresses to knee depth, to waist depth, and finally into the deepest waters of the riverbed. Flow quenches the thirst of drinkers, washes and cleanses the soiled, provides irrigation to drought-stricken land, enriches the riverbed with pearls, sustains marine life, and provides transportation and recreation, along with the endless catalog of other works it does. Most importantly, the river is the hub and attractant which naturally draws people together to a common bond that identifies their place for existence as humans on this earth – its waters. All these works of love the Spirit does in one movement of its “flow” and never stops. The Spirit is the flow through our lives each day, then into the ocean or God’s presence in His heavenly courts. That is the role of the Spirit; He takes us to the glorious courts where Jesus, with our humanity into His own being, in one continuous flow and movement, mediates by representing and substituting for all our human responses before the Father.
“The story of Ezekiel tells us that God’s love at no time stops flowing in the Bula man-river.* And if it never stops flowing, then He is always present throughout our lives. We pray for “breakthroughs” as though God is distant, and we wonder when He’s going to show up. Meanwhile, we fend for ourselves. It contradicts the truth we know about Him in the life of the Bula man-river.*
“Think about this: abundance means the “flow” of God’s love is incessant, relentless, and nonstop from His throne of grace. There is no room to think a single thought of lack and want in this picture; there is no room for fear or death, for it is a picture of overwhelming and undefeatable abundance and richness and true life that comes from man’s union with the triune God in Jesus by the power of the Spirit. There is never a nook or cranny where want or lack is able to enter, as long as the hydrology of “living waters” overwhelms life in the Bula man-river.* Can our thoughts rest in such an unimaginably super-abundant place, looking out into the world of fear and lack around us and not allowing this fearful world to enter? That is how God views life from His place of complete dominance and abundance. It’s not a human place; that’s why the life of Jesus makes such thoughts possible by vicariously taking us into this three-dimensional miraculous life to exist in the Bula man-river* – in you and me.” (Bula Man-River – The Miracle of Triune Living.” Pg.84-89)
Cover of My Book “Bula-Man-River, Miracle of Triune Living”
I hope you found that explanation of the “living waters” of the Spirit flowing in man as a gift from the Father as something we can never live without in life. The gift we receive from God our Father in the flow of the living waters’ will turn a page today as we allow Christ’s mediatory work to flow in our lives. That page in your life comprises all your human responses hidden in the “living waters” of the Spirit in Christ. You see, no one can move or even aspire to a greater and nobler place than they are at present, if they leave undone the things expected of them in their present place. That is the meaning of “flow;” it does something to you. It is not stagnant or inactive. It inspires you to move with it. The “flow” of the present is the key to how “deep” your future will become. When we do what the Spirit moves us to do today, we will then move into “deeper” waters in future. The key to the life of the Bula man-river*is the value of the “living waters” a person gives others. The intrinsic value of the “living waters” is not what you get from life but what you give it. Fittingly, Proverbs tell us, “The man who waters others, will himself be watered” (Prov. 11:25, NASB emphasis added).
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to write me in the space provided below, or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessing of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you today and give you strength for authentic Triune Living as a Bula man-river.*
Kiang (Your Servant in Christ)
* The “Bula man-river” is the metaphor describing the union of man with the Love of the Triune God flowing in humans, making possible the “Triune Life” – the source of the miraculous life in man. To read the many facets of life of the Bula man-river, go to my website www.bulamanriver.com where you can order a copy of my Book. Thank you for your support.
All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise