Knowing what is right is like deep water in the heart; a wise person draws from the well within.” (Proverbs 20:5 MSG)
One thing I do at the beginning of each year is wait on the Lord for His promise through Scripture for the coming year. This idea was introduced to me by a wise church leader over a decade ago and I have followed the practice every year since. A Bible verse either comes in the last few days of the previous year or early in the new year.
This year’s promise seemed to take longer to be revealed and I sensed in my spirit that God was calling me to deeper level of knowing God intimately. The promise was going to call for a greater commitment and I believe that there was a cost involved that would call for even greater sacrifice.
When the promise from His Word came it was direct and real: Knowing what is right is like deep water in the heart; a wise person draws from the well within.” (Proverbs 20:5 MSG)
Most commentators speaking into this verse tend to differentiate between the counsel in a man’s heart and a wise man drawing it out. But for me this promise took on a very personal focus. Initially I thought it was a call to go deeper into God intimately, but as this month has progressed, I sense God had another purpose.
I believe the Lord revealed to me that for me to pursue the deep I desire in my relationship with Him, going progressively deeper along the inward path to the very heart of the Father, it would be the Lord, through His Holy Spirit who would draw from the well within.
Interestingly, the Bible addresses deep water in relation to God’s presence and purposes. He is crafting and moulding us into spiritual completeness not found in the shallow and still moments of life.
When we find ourselves in deep water, we need to be reminded that “For I know that the Lord is great and that our Lord is above all gods. Whatever the Lord pleases, that has He done in the heavens and on earth, in the seas and all deeps” (Psalms 135:5-6 MSG). God created the deep waters to serve His purposes. It’s in these settings of proverbial deep water that disciples of Jesus Christ come to experience some of His most sensitive and delicate work to enable them to follow Him. Intellectually we may all know this, but it’s when our toes don’t touch bottom, figuratively speaking, that we begin to panic.
The reference to “draw out” the man’s plans is taken from the practice of drawing water from a deep well. The best example of a deep well is found in John 4 with the woman at the well in Samaria. This well was Jacob’s well that he dug and passed on as an inheritance for future generations. Wells were strategically placed in areas that had lack. Wells are places of reserve. Wells are where communities come together and are open to all. The sustainability of a community and possibly even a culture, was determined by the longevity and a deepness of the community well. The deeper the well the more valuable it is to a community. Jesus came and sat down upon the well to talk to the woman. He was seated upon a promise that had been passed down from generation to generation. The well that had been dug now became the point of Jesus touching one who has been an outcast. Scripture tell us that the woman told Jesus this well is very deep.
Pure and undisturbed, but secret, hidden, and hard to be come at: such are the things of the spirit of a man, the thoughts of his mind, the devices of his heart; which, though easily known by the searcher of heart, are not easily penetrated into by men; or it is not easily got out of them what is in them, especially in some men, who are very close and reserved.
Philosopher Lord Francis Bacon observes, that there are six ways whereby the knowledge of men may be drawn out and disclosed; by their faces and countenances, by words, by deeds, by their nature, by their ends, and by the relations of others. The searcher of the heart, Jesus, will discover what is deep within the well of our heart and it may need to be gently and wisely drawn from us by astute inquiries, thus eliciting his secret designs.
I believe God is directing a drawing out from the deep well, where there is a treasure of what He desires. In other words, God is not directing us to draw out without result. If God is saying search deeper, then we must be in the right location.