Ever catch yourself looking at your life wondering: “Whatever happened that I landed up in this situation?” Or been in a life situation, where you wonder: “How am I going to fix it?” I was contemplating my own life and was reminded of the story in 2 Kings 2:19-21
The people of the city said to Elisha, ‘Look, our lord, this town is well situated, as you can see, but the water is bad and the land is unproductive.’
‘Bring me a new bowl,’ he said, ‘and put salt in it.’ So they brought it to him.
Then he went out to the spring and threw the salt into it, saying, ‘This is what the Lord says: “I have healed this water. Never again will it cause death or make the land unproductive.”’ And the water has remained pure to this day, according to the word Elisha had spoken.
The men of the city saw potential in the city (they chose to look for the positive rather than focus on the negative), but recognised what was wrong. The water was “bad” and “unproductive.” It does not tell us what happened to the water, just that it was no longer the source of life to the people who came into contact with. Sometimes we feel like that about our lives, or situations in our lives. We see some good, but it’s just not living up to what it is supposed to be doing.
We are at the “What happened?” stage, “What do I do, now?”
Elisha does three things:
- First he calls for a “new bowl,” not just a previously used bowl, or an old bowl, but a totally new bowl. We need a new way of thinking, not a previously used way of thinking, or old thought patterns, but thinking that does not produce what was previously evident in our lives. We get this new thinking in the word of God, Rom 12:2
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
- Then he calls for salt, to purify. We need to purify our thought patterns, purify our lifestyle, purify our habits, both personal and relational attitudes and cleanse our lives of sin.
2 Cor 7:1 “Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.”
James 4:8 “Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
- Finally, Elisha goes to the spring, the lifeblood of the city, the source of water and cleans it with the salt so that never again will it cause death (of relationships, dreams, careers, health, marriages etc) and be unproductive (in life, in purpose, in relationships, in finances, in marriage, in dreams etc).
Elisha goes back to the source of the problem and starts to fix it there. Very often the source of the problem is the way we think and the attitudes of our hearts.
Proverbs 4:23 (NKJV) “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.”
Go back to the source of your problems, the place where it all started going wrong and make it new, purify it and clean up the source.
By changing the source or cause of it all, you can change the effect it has on your life.
Thank You Father that with You we can always start again! With You we can always go back to the beginning and start with a clean slate and your Word promises you will bring beauty out of ashes. Help me to examine the source of things in my life to identify where I need to take action to make new, purify and start again.