Have you ever gone on a God Hunt? A God Hunt begins when you teach yourself to look for God’s hand at work in the every day occurrences of your life. Here’s one of my personal God Hunt Sightings:
For years now, whenever I take a bath, the water turns a translucent grayish-black. This is most concerting, because I think of a warm bath as a kind of non-sacramental form of baptism—at least a reminder that as a Christian, I have willingly entered the waters of baptism as a living metaphor of my life, death and resurrection in Jesus Christ.
A bath washes away not only the dirt of gardening, the dust and cobwebs of rummaging in the attic or in the basement, it soothes away achiness, comforts a disordered soul, and eases a too-active mind into sleep—either for the night or for a nap in the afternoon.
So, a bath that leaves a residue in the tub after the water has drained offends my sensibilities regarding the sacred meaning of cleansing and purifying.
When we had the water heater replaced two summers back, the plumber disengaged the water softener. “This just ain’t doing nothing for you, ma’am. Might as well turn it off.”
Even though the blackened water had existed before he disconnected that tank, I was anxious to purchase a new unit. This December my husband gave me a new water softener as my Christmas gift—I couldn’t think of anything I wanted more!
And, since the water is still a little grey, I’m thinking we probably need to replace the inside well-pump—we have well water with a high iron content. But, my baths are much, much better (as well as the kitchen-sink dishwater). We have lived in our home for 37 years, after all.
When I think that all around the world, the poor often have trouble drawing water. When they find a water source that is not polluted or putrefied, someone has to haul it, often for miles. My grey-black water is nothing compared to what others face when clean water is needed to drink, or to wash their hands, to bathe their children or to scrub clothes.
God is a God of clean water: He created it, He sanctified it for bathing and employed it as a sign of purification from sins. He commands, “Wash your hands your sinners and purify your hearts.” But more than anything, water is used as imagery to help us humans understand that God not only is the source of clean and pure physical water, He is also the source of spiritual cleansing: “The water that I give will become … a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.” The assurance in all this is that God’s Spirit within is experienced as a mysterious ever-renewed source, up welling in fullness of life.
This is a great Advent meditation, one that fits with John the Baptist’s cry, “Prepare ye the way of the Lord!” Advent, the season before Christmas, is a time for bathing.
I spy God!
Award-winning author Karen Mains has long had an interest in spiritual formation and the obedient Christian walk. She has written about the God Hunt in her book by the same name, The God Hunt: The Delightful Chase and the Wonder of Being Found. A hardback copy can be ordered from Mainstay Ministries for $10.00 plus $4.95 shipping and handling. Contact Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will be happy to autograph a copy for you.
Karen continues to write content for her Christian blog, “Thoughts-by-Karen-Mains.” In so doing, she desires to touch the lives of Christian women and men and help them find ways to walk closer with the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, through silent retreats, spiritual teaching, women’s retreats, Christian vacation opportunities, and other ministry activities, Karen helps each Christian woman and man receive vital spiritual food.
Through her Hungry Souls ministry, Karen serves as a spiritual coach to many Christian women and men, and teaches a mentor-writing class. And, through the Global Bag Project, she is working to develop a network of African women who sew exquisite cloth reusable shopping bags, Africa bags. This micro-finance women opportunity helps provide a much-needed sustainable income for struggling African families. For more information on this critically important project, please click here.
For decades, Karen and her husband, David, have served God through religious communications—radio, television, and print publication. They are the co-authors of the Kingdom Tales Trilogy: Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance, and Tales of the Restoration. To find many valuable resources for pastors and congregations at the Mainstay Ministries main website, please click here.
Likewise, pastors will find special resources to help them prepare effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.