SUNDAY STUDY: The Impoverished Ministry of Jesus

From Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest @

“The well is deep” — and a great deal deeper than the Samaritan woman knew! (John 4:11).

Think of the depths of human nature, of human life; think of the depths of the “wells” in you. Have you been limiting, or impoverishing, the ministry of Jesus to the point that He is unable to work in your life?

Suppose that you have a deep “well” of hurt and trouble inside your heart, and Jesus comes and says to you, “Let not your heart be troubled…” (John 14:1). Would your response be to shrug your shoulders and say, “But, Lord, the well is deep; You can’t draw up quietness and comfort out of it.”  No, He will bring them down from above. Jesus doesn’t bring anything up from the wells of human nature.

We limit the Holy One of Israel by remembering what we have allowed Him to do for us in the past, and by saying, “Of course, I cannot expect God to do this particular thing.” The thing that taxes almightiness is the very thing which we as disciples of Jesus ought to believe He will do. We impoverish and weaken His ministry the moment we forget He is Almighty. The impoverishment is in us, not in Him. We will come to Jesus as Comforter or as Sympathizer, but we refrain from coming to Him as Almighty.

The reason some of us are such poor specimens of Christianity is because we have no Almighty Christ. We have Christian attributes and experiences, but there is no abandonment to Jesus Christ. When we get into difficult circumstances, we impoverish His ministry by saying, “Of course, He can’t do anything about this,” and we struggle down to the deeps and try to get the water for ourselves. Beware of the satisfaction of sinking back and saying, “It can’t be done.” You know it can be done if you will look to Jesus. The well of your incompleteness is deep, but make the effort to look away from yourself and look to Him.