The God of Water


Water, like a wild Love that’s constrained

By dams of fear and levees of hate,

Builds a fierce current, black and white and jealous.

Until it overtakes its boundaries, and levels everything in its path.

When a round of hate shot into its pews, a Charleston church sang hymns of grace,

Releasing rapids of redemption to fill nine empty spaces, and countless souls.

Hatred and violence drowned under a current of inexplicable love,

Proving Emmanuel and humbling the world.

Christian González Verón

Water, like the cycles of the moon 

Churns a tide of high and low, repentance and rest.

Building on an ancient rhythm and arranging creation’s song.

Raining down, lifting up, and wasting not a drop.

And when a hater shoots with bullets or words,

When evil packs a gun or a prejudice,

The gospel cycles close, using an invisible force to pull the darkness in,

Offering supernatural winds of change and the power to turn.


Water, like saving faith, 

Spreads wide when invited in,

Lingering long and filling the lowly places deep,

Reaching farther in the valleys than on higher ground.

And when a woman like Elisabeth Elliot opens her life to God,

The power of Jehovah rushes into her wide open soul.

And carries her around the world, to the end of a spear, and through the valley of darkness.

Leaving the watchers with a higher perspective and a bigger God.


Water, like the persons of God

Are three in one, a trio of the same.

Father, Son, and Holy Spirt. Solid, liquid, and gas.

The first can be all at once, the second forced to choose its form.

When a Church worships the Triune God,

Trusting in His plan, resting in His work, and listening to His voice,

When the body of Christ sets a table of repentance and feasts on His grace,

It can, all at once, be a solid rock, a fountain of life, and a breath of fresh air.


Water, like the blood of Christ,

Washes the dirtiest, guiltiest, and those wrecked with shame,

Turning sinners into saints and making the worst worthy again,

So we may stand clean in His presence, holy and pure.

When a sinner like you and me stoops to lap the Living Water,

When she lets it fill her empty places and cool her prideful anger,

When she opens the water-gates and lets it round her sharp edges,

She meets the same God who brought water from a rock and life from a dusty grave.


“Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” John 7:38

Linked up with Give Me Grace,  Purposeful Faith and Testimony Tuesday,  Three Word Wednesday, and Coffee For Your Heart

29 thoughts on “The God of Water

  1. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser June 23, 2015 / 2:12 am

    Nicely put.

    I’ma bit too ill to feel God’s love as I write this – trying hard not to faint, and fall into the keyboard. But this may be an advantage of the rather cool and logical faith that God’s given me. You see, I believe He’s there, and that Jesus came not because of any epiphany, but because of Ockham’s Razor…given the historical, documented facts surrounding Christ’s life, and given the premise that the Apostles were sensible men who would not willingly die for a cause, or a God that was not ALL that He promised…the Gospel story is the most logical and rational explanation.

    Sounds boring, I guess…no emotive praise and worship, and I’m really a drag to go to a revival with. But when the chips are down, and He feels far away…like now, because it HURTS…I need not rely on feelings to inform faith.


    • Karen Brown June 23, 2015 / 4:21 am

      Andrew- First of all, thank you for reading and commenting on my poem. I always appreciate your thoughtful and honest words.
      Neither faith nor our response will be perfect on this side of heaven. Some stumble over the head – response (logic). Others, like you, stumble over the heart-response. Most are tripped up by both, at times. May we both rejoice, even now in our respective pains, that we will someday worship God perfectly and forever.
      I think your key phrase is “faith that God’s given me”. What a gift to know, especially when pain has hijacked your emotions, that faith is not something we’ve presented and hung on the altar with threads of logic, emotion, or works. It’s a relationship… initiated by God’s love and sealed by HIs blood – neither of which rely on our emotions, excitement, intelligence, or performance. It’s a relationship fueled by intimacy and trust- eventually resulting in praise and worship- not the other way around. And if praise and worship are distracted because of the pain, he can still use your pain to reveal himself and strengthen the intimacy of your relationship with him. I pray that you learn to trust him with your pain and with your future.
      Rather than jam up this comment-thread, you can continue this conversation by messaging me from my “About Me” page. In the meantime, I’ll be praying for you. Peace-


  2. Kathryn Shirey June 23, 2015 / 5:24 am

    beautiful words in a difficult time for this country and for God’s people. Water that washes us clean, washes us new with God’s love, grace and forgiveness.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen Brown June 23, 2015 / 5:26 am

      Kathryn- Thank you for stopping by. May God’s grace be evident to you today.


  3. Groundbreakers June 23, 2015 / 5:41 am

    Poetry nearly leaves me in a state of awe. I don’t have that gift, but you certainly do. What a beautiful poem with such a deeply inspiring message of hope and healing. Visiting today through the #RaRalinkup.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen Brown June 23, 2015 / 5:44 am

      Thank you for your kind words. May we all be moved by God’s hope and healing during this troubling time.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Mary Geisen June 23, 2015 / 5:44 am

    Wow! Your words took my breath away with their beauty and emotion hitting every aspect of how I feel right now with the events that have been happening recently in our world. Your images speak of difficulties but at the same time cleansing, healing and a better way. Thank you for how you let God speak through you into this poem. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen Brown June 23, 2015 / 5:46 am

      Mary- Thank you for reading and for leaving your encouraging words.


  5. Linda Stoll June 23, 2015 / 6:25 am

    Stunning and raw and so very wise this piece is, Karen. Powerful.

    Thank you for speaking into our souls …


  6. Michele Morin June 23, 2015 / 6:55 am

    I really love this. So many different metaphors, all exquisite! Doesn’t it just reveal the creative genius behind it all!


    • Karen Brown June 23, 2015 / 3:56 pm

      Michele- Thank you! And yes- to God be the glory!


  7. Bev Duncan @ Walking Well With God June 23, 2015 / 3:53 pm

    I was deeply moved by your poetry… trying to put what is happening in our world into words is at best impossible at times. You’ve captured our dilemma and our desperate need for Living Water…beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen Brown June 23, 2015 / 3:55 pm

      Thanks so much, Bev. Your comment means a lot to me.


  8. Sarah Knepper June 24, 2015 / 7:28 am

    Beautiful, Karen!


  9. Emily June 24, 2015 / 7:53 am

    Very well written! Good reminders…Trusting in His plan, resting in His work, and listening to His voice,


  10. Laura June 24, 2015 / 8:22 am

    Oh my this is SO beautiful! This is my first time visiting, and I’m happy to be resting here awhile while I soak in your words. This permeating love of God that you speak of is so powerful, isn’t it?! His love is so big that I can’t even comprehend it. I’m blessed by your thoughts!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen Brown June 25, 2015 / 6:08 am

      Laura- Thank you for stopping by and leaving these kinds words. I hope you visit again! 🙂


  11. June 24, 2015 / 1:18 pm

    Karen, may we open our souls and allow the Living Water to flow like the parched ground deep into our recesses filling us to overflowing. Beautiful words. : )

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Being Woven June 24, 2015 / 8:21 pm

    Such power in this poem, throughout. I read it twice as I wanted to catch it all, but will have to return for there is so much here. The waters have run over me this week, but I seemed to have been like a duck and allowed the water to run off my back, so I missed some of the soothing that Jesus wanted for me amidst the SC shooting. I just felt and still feel so sad, so frustrated, so… But your words have begun to sink in, My feathers are less waterproof than 15 minutes ago. I am grateful for you and your precious gift of writing poetry filled with such depth. God has given you His gift to share with me and so many others.

    “…a trio of the same….solid, liquid, gas” “When the body of Christ sets a table of repentance and feasts on His grace, It can, all at once, be a solid rock, a fountain of life, and a breath of fresh air.”

    That this one child of God may set that table and recall that He forgives, is All, and will take me to His Heavenly Home one day.
    Caring through Christ, ~ linda

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen Brown June 24, 2015 / 8:33 pm

      Linda- your thoughtful comment leaves me so grateful and a bit emotional. I always pray before I publish that I would encourage at least one person for Christ. And your comment did that for me. My faith is bolstered by your words. Thank you so much for taking the time to write them. I look forward to worshiping with you in glory.


  13. Kelly Balarie June 25, 2015 / 9:13 am

    Beautiful, it makes me want to cry. Thank you for your words of love co-mingled with grace. Cheering you on from the #RaRalinkup on Purposeful Faith.


  14. Kristin Hill Taylor June 25, 2015 / 2:50 pm

    This is beautiful. I’m going to read it again. 🙂 So glad you linked this up at #ThreeWordWednesday.


  15. Ifeoma Samuel June 30, 2015 / 2:27 pm

    Hello Karen, I left a comment but can’t find it.
    This is a beautiful poem.
    well written.
    God bless you

    Liked by 1 person

  16. lynndmorrissey October 15, 2017 / 8:50 am

    This is powerful, Karen. I’d not read it before, and I’m glad I saw this. So moving. America is drowning in the waters of hatred and we need the healing, powerful, redemptive water that poured from Christ’s side on the cross to heal our sinful lives. I wrote a poem about Charleston too which I take the liberty of sharing here, because you are a poet who appreciates singing your pain redemptively. I have tried to write a poem about Charlottesville, but nothing will come, not even poetry. I am so sick of all the hatred, the violence, the guns…. heartsick. thank you for sharing. It’s really beautiful, powerful, and redemptive.

    by Lynn D. Morrissey

    in memory and honor of the martyred members of “Mother” Emanuel AME Church, Charleston, South Carolina, June 2015

    Nine faithful saints met below a mahogany-lined,
    stained-glass sanctuary
    in an undercroft meeting room,

    Nine innocents assembled,
    as children in a Sunday-School circle,
    daring to entwine the stranger in their midst
    in love’s caring embrace.
    Opening their good hearts to him,
    opening their Good Books,
    their fingers traced ancient emblems on a page,
    onion-skinned words,
    pregnant with power,
    that birthed life and love, freedom and hope,
    while he unearthed a pistol with nine bitter bullets,
    threatening to unleash Pharoah’s racist vitriol
    of centuries past.

    (Didn’t he know that God commands to let His children go?
    Didn’t he know that Pharoah and his slave-owning minions throughout the eons
    always get sucked under and perish
    in the undertow of hate?
    Didn’t he know that Christ came and died and rose—
    that He set the slaves, the captives free?)

    Would that the stranger had unsheathed the Sword, two-edged,
    and turned it on himself,
    pledging to let it do its piercing surgery,
    dividing his withered soul and spirit, tethered joints and marrow,
    cutting to the quick his narrow thoughts and intentions,
    his rancid racial dissension,
    slicing out the bigotry hidden in his own subterranean, Satanic heart.
    Would that he had subjugated his repugnant faux-supremacy under
    the Supreme Judge.

    Would that he had begged Him
    and them
    for mercy for even contemplating what he was about
    to do.

    (He could have stopped.
    Racists can always stop.
    They must.

    Instead, he raged on, firing close-range shots like cannons,
    abandoning all humanity,

    He left them there,
    nine innocents below the mahogany-lined,
    stained-glass sanctuary,
    blood-stains on his hands,
    slave-chains on his heart,
    chains sure to drag him down and drown his soul.

    But for nine faithful saints,
    the waters parted.

    They walked through to safety.

    They walked through to higher,
    holier ground.


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