September 26, 2022

Overcoming Obstacles

Written by Boyd Bailey

Obstacles have a way of getting in the way of what you want, but cannot stop what God wants.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – September 26, 2022

Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. John 7:37-39

Obstacles have a way of getting in the way of what you want, but cannot stop what God wants. An obstacle opposes, hinders progress—but water has a way of overcoming obstacles. A river at full capacity surges over rocks and boulders, effortlessly flowing forward as a force of nature. A river’s origin of healthy water flow is not always known, only that it relentlessly streams with a capacity that seems endless. Majestically, crystal clear water makes its way over and around these immovable hard places, accented by a white foam of bubbly delight. Rivers of delight are a picture of God’s way of getting what He wants for you.

Jesus loudly speaks a timeless truth in a timely manner for all to hear. The work of the Holy Spirit in the life of Jesus believers is like rivers of living water. An ongoing, pulsating, refreshing source of life for all who submit to and flow with the Spirit’s love and guidance. Like a river guide the Spirit gives discernment and direction to all who pay attention and listen to the voice of expertise and experience. Shallow waters expose elements that need to be avoided and, in the depths, danger can lurk. Those who flow with the Spirit are prepared to overcome all obstacles.

“The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail” (Isaiah 58:11).

As you travel on the Lord’s river of life it may look like there’s a big bend up ahead, screening what’s around the corner. Instead of obsessing over the unknown, look around you at the beauty of now. Look down at your feet and be grateful for the solid, secure vessel of peace that carries you, look around at the luscious green forest of a caring community who support you and gaze up to the brilliant blue skies of the Lord who loves you—His beloved. If you face an obstacle of fear, be loved and love. If anger, forgive. If resentment, release. If jaded, rest. If finances, trust. If sad, give. If anxious, be thankful. If bored, be adventurous. If uptight, be joyful. Flow in the Spirit.

Oswald Chambers describes the wisdom of not focusing on the obstacles in life, but on Jesus Christ, “Never focus your eyes on the obstacle or the difficulty. The obstacle will be a matter of total indifference to the river that will flow steadily through you if you will simply remember to stay focused on the Source. Never allow anything to come between you and Jesus Christ— not emotion nor experience— nothing must keep you from the one great sovereign Source. Think of the healing and far-reaching rivers developing and nourishing themselves in our souls! God has been opening up wonderful truths to our minds, and every point He has opened up is another indication of the wider power of the river that He will flow through us. If you believe in Jesus, you will find that God has developed and nourished in you mighty, rushing rivers of blessing for others.” Stay in the flow of the Spirit, so you can serve those out of the boat, needing a lift up. 

The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life” (Revelation 22:17).


Heavenly Father, I praise you for the life-giving river of your Spirit who guides me in your will, through Christ’s love and in Jesus’ name, amen.


Who do I know, who is facing an obstacle and needs me to help her out?

Related Reading

Isaiah 55:1; Joel 2:28; John 3:15, 4:10; Acts 2:33

Worship Resource

Jesus Culture ft. Kim Walker-Smith: In the River


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