They call it the Water Tree of Montenegro. It grows in a valley near the town of Dinoša and water, quite literally, pours from this tree. And although the population of Montenegro is largely Orthodox Christian, the people of Dinoša do not attribute this rare wonder to the miraculous. You see, this 150-year-old mulberry tree grows above a natural spring. Its trunk is hollow. And when heavy rains occur, this spring–as well as others in the area–bubble up with considerable pressure. The pressure beneath the “water tree” is great enough to send water springing up through its trunk and out its top.
Unfortunately, the tree only gushes water when water is abundant in the valley. If only the spring beneath it flowed in the dry seasons as well, it wouldn’t compete with other trees for water. It could provide water for itself and for the thirsty trees around it.
You know, in the Bible Jesus promised something like this to all who believe in Him. He said, “Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst. Because the water that I shall give him shall become in him a fountain of water, springing up to eternal life” (John 4:14). Instead of merely giving us a drink, Jesus promises to give us the fountain of living water to live inside us—the Holy Spirit (John 7:37–39; Jeremiah 2:13; 17:13).
A Gift from God
True believers in Jesus have the Holy Spirit of God living within them. And the Holy Spirit’s life-giving flow does not wax and wane with the seasonal changes of life. The spring beneath this tree gave forth water only when water was abundant. During dry spells, when its water was needed most, it too went dry. If anything, the opposite is true with the Spirit of God. God’s Spirit flows strongest in times of adversity, sorrow, and conflict. In Paul’s words, when our sufferings abound, so does the supply of God’s comfort and grace (2 Corinthians 1:4–5). When we are at our weakest, then God’s strength becomes perfected in us (2 Corinthians 12:9–10). James stated that God gives greater grace (James 4:6). And where sin abounds, there God’s grace much more abounds (Romans 5:20).
Therefore, the believer in Jesus should never be like a tree that competes with others for a tiny bit of moisture in the ground. He or she mustn’t survive at the expense of others around them, creating strife and turmoil in the home or workplace. True believers have the Spirit of God living within them, who strengthens them to live and to be a blessing to others. “Freely you have received,” said Jesus, “therefore, freely give” (Matthew 10:8). Believers are called to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13–16). Let us brighten and bring healing to whatever corner of the world God has planted us.
Dear Father in heaven, fill me with Your life-giving Holy Spirit. Strengthen and energize me to be a witness for Jesus and a blessing to all those around me, I pray. Amen.