My post last week highlighted how much Christ wants us to serve, and how much his grace looks right through our imperfections. When we come to the well, we are to serve him, and in turn, he promises that our thirst will be quenched.
The water is cold and it is sitting there waiting to be drunk.
The story continues on.
“Jesus answered, “If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water.”
The woman said, “Sir, you don’t even have a bucket to draw with, and this well is deep. So how are you going to get this ‘living water’? Are you a better man than our ancestor Jacob, who dug this well and drank from it, he and his sons and livestock, and passed it down to us?”
Jesus said, “Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst—not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life.” (John 4:10-14 The Message)
I really like this translation of the Scripture. This passage is pretty well known amongst Christian circles, and I want to bring a new light to it in turn of physical thirst and how it relates into spiritual thirst. I mentioned last week that I was on the verge of mild dehydration during a recent century ride I went on with a buddy of mine. Typically, when I am thirsty I drink. Sometimes I wait way too long between drinks, and I get to the point of mild dehydration where I drink as much a humanly possible to quiche my thirst.
How often we do this with our Faith as well? Recharge on Sunday, drain the tank all week and long for that refill on Sunday morning. Perhaps you have a prior commitment on Sunday, and you go two weeks without a refill. Deficit indeed. Like the majority of America who attends church twice a year on Easter and Christmas, it is no wonder there is such an epidemic in this Country.
I have a friend who used to attend church with me. He no longer attends church anywhere, but I can sense the longing in his spirit every time he talks about his faith. He spends his Sundays training, shopping, or whatever he does, but I can only imagine the dryness and quite honestly untapped potential he feels in his soul. I say this not to pass judgment, but instead to illustrate the feeling of dehydration we feel in our souls when we are not in communion with Him and a body of believers. If God has called us to serve in order to feel peace, our involvement in a body of believers is a critical element to his fullness. While my time spans of a week are smaller increments of time, I still feel dehydrated inside all too often.
Physical dehydration causes a mess of health related issues from fatigue, loss of concentration, to headaches and nausea. I think these symptoms can also be related to our Faith and lack of effectiveness in the World.
The selfish response to this is to ‘go get a refill’. “I am thirsty and I need to drink.” I think I could make a great point here that it is about refilling everyday and every minute. It is not enough to simply attend church. We are called to continuously worship Him in Spirit and in Truth (John 4:24). We are told to pray without ceasing (I Thes. 5:19), and to daily renew our minds in Him (2 Chor 4:16). It is more than church, but this thought of ‘refilling’ our souls is one I can relate to. If we are always drinking from His cup, dehydration is a less likely option.
But my logic is still backwards.
Jesus said, “Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst—not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life.”
What does a spring do? It ‘gushes’ with running water. People from all around the world come to the spring to drink. Living water. Not only are we hydrated, we are spilling over with water. And how does this happen?
Step #1: Serve Him First
Step #2: Drink and commune with him constantly
The promise is a gushing spring of water.
If the side effect of His touch in our lives is a spring of living water, than ‘dehydration’ is not even in our vocabulary. The words “refill” and “thirst” no longer are relevant. And how do we get there? Serve Him. Serve others. In the heat of the day, when it seems hardest- serve. The promise is there. Springs of living water.
While all this sinks in, I am simply praying that God is patient with me. I pray every person that reads this will embrace the opportunity to serve Him. Get involved somewhere with a body of believers. Serve the non-believers as well. I pray my friend will find community once again. I pray that I personally can be a blessing in such a new way that people can’t help but come to a spring of living water that comes from my soul.
Lord here is your water. Come and Drink.