Spontaneous Overflow

Spontaneous Overflow
By Steve Smith

Making coffee the other day at work before I went delivering I had put the pot in the sink to fill it with water while I was putting coffee in the basket. There was not enough coffee in the can so I had to open a new one, which took a minute longer than normal. By then the pot in the sink was overflowing, once something is full the spontaneous overflow continues to spill out as the water did into the sink.

This made me think of the story of Jesus with the woman at the well that is recorded in John 4 that I recently heard a message on. Without printing the whole story (but I do encourage you to read it for yourself while or after you read this) Jesus encounters a woman at a well at mid day in Samaria. This poses cultural, gender and time issues as Jews did not talk to Samaritans, men did not talk to women and women got water in the morning and not at noon. The entire encounter was strange.

The encounter begins with Jesus asking her for a drink and it unfolds from there, she wants physical water and Jesus is trying to pour into her life spiritual water, living water, Himself! Jesus asks her to call her husband to which she replies she has no husband. He gently convicts her of her sins by letting her know she has had 5 husbands and now has a live in lover. She finally tries to wrap up the conversation by saying “I know the Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things. Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”

What was her reaction? The woman runs into town proclaiming “Come and meet a man who told me everything I ever did, do you think he could be the Messiah?” and many people went out to Jesus and believed because of her testimony. Her response was a spontaneous overflow of being touched and changed by an encounter with Jesus! Just like a coffee pot overflowing in a sink her life was overflowing with Jesus to others.

It is possible we say nothing because we have nothing to say? Without Jesus personally encountering us and changing us there is nothing to overflow because our spiritual well is empty and the water is dead and not living. If Jesus has never encountered you He is speaking to you at this very moment to receive his gifts of repentance, forgiveness and eternal life and be changed forever. Staying filled to overflow is no mystery either, Jesus comes to us in power and truth through the Word. Our Bibles like the faucet for coffee are the water that causes us by the Spirit to overflow spontaneously. 

Note then also this lady had only known Jesus like a few minutes and she didn’t wait to go and tell. Nor did she have to get more information, study her Old Testament or go to Bible school in order to go tell. She knew one thing, this Jewish man was the Messiah, the promised Savior, the one foretold who would die for sin and rise again for everlasting life.

Is there any spontaneous overflow of Jesus in our lives? Is Jesus spilling out of us into the lives of others? Allow this to be an encouragement to you in that it’s not about how long Jesus has been in our lives, nor about how much we know about the Bible, simply that we know he is living water, the Savior, the cross bearing, blood shedding, sin forgiving, death conquering King of Kings and his offer is free for all! One pastor stated “My job is not to explain Him, but to proclaim Him.”

Of course we don’t have wells in the middle of our cities these days but think about this, how many people in the course of a day or week do you see with a bottle of water? Have you ever asked anyone what kind of water it was? Most of them have labels and they will say the name to you, why not ask them if they have ever had living water? Seems like a natural conversation starter doesn’t it? If it is good enough for Jesus to start with water surely it can be good enough for us. You never know, maybe the person you share Jesus with will run around town and tell everyone about him. It all starts somewhere, how about with you and me? God knows exactly what to do when our lives spontaneously overflow with Jesus so that other lives can be touched and changed by Him.