River of Life

River

It is CRAZY how many “church” songs I know. (Guess all those years in “sunday school”, youth group, summer camp, Young Life, and K-Life paid off?)

Most days the songs simply lay dormant in my head. But sometimes I read or hear something – a verse, a quote, a conversation – that awakens them. And the lyrics start stirring around like agitated bumble bees.

So earlier this week when I these words by John Ortberg in The Me I Want to Be,

“God’s plan is not just for us to be saved by grace – it is for us to live by grace. God’s plan is for my daily life to be given, guided, guarded, and energized by the grace of God. To live in grace is to flow in the Spirit.”

“The only way to become the person God made you to be is to live with the Spirit of God flowing through you like a river of living water.”

this song started madly buzzing around in my head.

I’ve got a river of life flowing out of me,
Makes the lame to walk and the blind to see.
Opens prison doors sets the captives free,
I’ve got a river of life flowing out of me.

Spring up oh well…gush, gush, gush, gush
Within my soul!
Spring up oh well…splish, splash
And make me whole.
Spring up oh well…whoosh
And give to me. That life abundantly.

Do you remember that song?

It’s a little silly, yes. But Ortberg’s words helped me see the true meaning behind those age-old lyrics. And as it hums around in my head I find myself wondering what is truly “flowing out of me.”

Self-righteousness? Pride? Sarcasm? Cynicism? Anger? Fear?

Or a river of life?

What is flowing out of you?

Bonus question – What crazy old-school church songs do you have laying dormant in your head?

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Lindsey has a sincere love for her precious dog Molly, a good red wine and the Delta Sky Club. She spends her days (and some nights) laboring to end childhood hunger at Feed the Children and to gather, equip and unleash women at IF:Gathering.

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  • Bethany

    I have crazy old-school songs flowing out of me all the time. Today it was "We are the Body of Christ" from Psalty the Singing Psalm Book (the one where he introduces the Praise Kids to Psaltina and her kids, Harmony, Melody and Rhythm) and I sung "Arky, Arky/Rise and Shine" to my husband as we talked about what we would call ourselves if we lived in Arkansas. But when I'm having a faith crisis I'm most likely to get the earworm "When you don't understand, when you can't see His plan, when you can't trace His hand, trust His heart" from a musical made from Michael W. Smith's (Eye)2I album (that song was added in).

    PS Long-time lurker, first-time commenter. Love your blog.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      Thanks Bethany. Psalty the Singing Psalm Book? I love it!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/patriciazell patriciazell

    I have been remembering a song we used to sing in Campus Crusade for Christ at Ohio State way back in the early 1970's. "It Only Takes a Spark to Get a Fire Going." I think a lot about that song and I'm thinking that when people begin understanding and manifesting God's absolute love, that fire will start burning bright in all of our hearts.
    My recent post #45 THE RETURN OF CHRIST: THE CAST, PART THREE

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      Love that song…"boom…boom…pass it on…boom…boom…pass it on"

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/jcatron jcatron

    Can we sing that song tonight at small group complete with motions ;)

    But seriously, it's amazing how those songs stay with us and speak to us when we really need them!
    My recent post I Don’t Grow

  • http://littlehoffman.blogspot.com tymm

    my entire run yesterday all I kept hearing in my head was "I got the peace that passes understanding down in my heart… where? down in my heart… where? down in my heart…"

    total earworm, couldn't shake it… (too much bible songs on CD for the little one in the car!)

  • http://www.idancerevolution.com Molly

    Lindsey,

    When I was reading your post I wanted to jump out of my chair to do the motions to "splish splash, splish splash" . I had so much fun with that song as a kid. Thank you for making me think on what is flowing out of me.

    I appreciate you and your words.

    Blessings,
    Molly
    My recent post The Music

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      It is a great song because something about singing brings overflowing joy.

  • http://thequirkyredhead.com redheadkate

    Too much these days, jealousy keeps rearing its ugly little green head. It seems like everyone around me is getting the things I have longed for…from the big things in life, right down to the little tattoo that my friend just got. And she never even wanted a tattoo. So I guess envy and jealousy are flowing out of me. Oh, how I long for graciousness and thankfulness for all that I have.

    I need to sing some of the childern's songs I learned long ago like "If I were a butterfly" about being thankful however God made me. And of course, as with all good Sunday School songs, it has the appropriate motions to go with the words.

    I do have to say that I caught myself singing "Arky, Arky" in the shower last week. Yep, those songs are stuck pretty firmly in our gray matter!
    My recent post Summer is for Swim Suits & Stalkers

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      I've been battling the jealousy thing too. It's not that I don't wish every happiness for my friends, it's that I just would love to catch my own dose. Ugh.

      • http://thequirkyredhead.com redheadkate

        I've found that it is easier to be happy for everyone else when I am with them. It is when I am alone that I let my mind dwell on what they have vs. what I have (or don't have). Then it makes me even more angry that I can't just be happy for them.
        My recent post Summer is for Swim Suits & Stalkers

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/mcadesigns mcadesigns

    I do this all the time. As I am listening to a message in church or a podcast, song lyrics start popping into my head. As I am processing a lesson, I am also thinking about which songs would go with it. I've never told anyone that because I thought it was kind of strange. ;)

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      Yep, kinda strange. I love strange. I live strange ;)

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/kaikunane ThatGuyKC

    Thank you for getting this song stuck in my head. Can't think of another Sunday school favorite from childhood because this one is drowning them out. :-)

    Great post and thanks for asking tough questions.
    My recent post Born to be Wild

  • http://www.sarahmarkley.com Sarah Markley

    flowing out of me? i hope it's grace and kindness. but i'm not always sure.

    oh and we have sung all of those. alece laughed b/c the other week when she was with us for chruch, we had our service in the local park. it was like "campfire" worship and chad sang "this is the day". kinda like all those old songs.

    My recent post Women and Pride: 1

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      i can't wait to sing campfire songs with your family!

  • http://katismith.squarespace.com Kati

    Such a wonderful post! We can't give to others until our cup is overflowing with the Spirit.
    PS. I recently saw John Ortberg at a conference and picked up that book. Sadly, it has yet to be cracked open (along with about 20 other books!). You've motivated me to finish up the ones I'm working on and get started on that one!
    My recent post Darkness and Light

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/prudychick prudychick

    Flowing out of me lately has been pride, arrogance, a nasty tongue. Stuff I've been praying about asking God to remove from my life.

    Bonus question: Yesterday I was walking out of the grocery store and swear this little girl was singing:
    "I may never march in the infantry, Ride in the cavalry, Shoot the artillery.
    I may never fly o'er the enemy, But I'm in the Lord's army. (yes, sir!)
    I'm in the Lord's army, (yes, sir!) I'm in the Lord's army, (yes, sir!)
    I may never march in the infantry, Ride in the Calvary, Shoot the artillery.
    I may never fly o'er the enemy, But I'm in the Lord's army. (yes, sir!) "

    I don't know if she was but I was immediately transported back to being a kid and marching in Sunday School.

    My recent post Fear Factor

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Lindsey_Nobles Lindsey_Nobles

      I'd totally forgotten about that song! Love it!

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