I remember when I was just a kid, and my brother and I were playing as my parents were working in the yard. My dad had some barrels of trash burning over near his shop, and I thought “oh I bet I can touch that barrel in such a flash that I will not get burned.” All the while I could see the flames glowing through the holes in the side and the metal starting to get red hot.
I knew better, I did. But I still touched it. Even though it was only for a millisecond, when I pulled back my hand it was on fire. Not literally flaming, but it burned – it hurt – it stung so bad!!
I told my brother instantly what I had done, and in his efforts to try and help me, he told me to run my hand under the cold water of the faucet outside. This only alleviated the pain for the time it was under the water, but it hurt even worse when I remove my hand from the water.
We were both worried that if our parents found out, he would get in trouble (more so than me), so we decided to play “Monkey see, monkey do”, waving our hands in the air as we walked/ran around outside while our parents continued to work.
I don’t know what ended up finally making us stop and tell them, but I just remember it just wasn’t getting any better. I seem to remember that he made me be the one to fess up and tell them what had happened earlier.
They immediately called our pastor who came over and put some salve on my hand and helped to bandage me up. I remember my hand being badly blistered and I had to keep it protected for quite some time before it healed.
Over the years, I’ve realized that when I’m washing dishes with scalding hot water, and I barely dip my fingertip into the water, it burns. Of course! I can barely stand it. And I’m always reminded of that day I decided to touch that flaming hot metal barrel.
But, if I run my fingers under cool water first, I can stand to dip them into the scalding hot water for just a second to grab what I need, and they don’t hurt. The longer my fingers are under the cool water, the more tolerance I build up against the scalding temperature.
It’s the same way when I spend time in the Living Water – the attacks against me don’t phase me. I breeze right through them. I see them for what they are – purely the tactics of the enemy. But, if I haven’t spent any time with Jesus, every time I go into the world and try to touch something that I have no business touching, even for a brief second, I will get hurt.
But when I spend time with Jesus, He fills me beyond anything I could imagine and I no longer have the desire to grab things in this world.