Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Got Thirst? Get Quenched!


God wired us for thirst b
y giving us a “low-fluid indicator”. If our fluid level is low, the signals will flare -- dry mouth, achy head, weak knees, unclear thinking, even fainting. Just before my Holy Lands trip, I was having some really bad neck and back issues, so I went to the chiropractor to give me a tune-up before departure. His first question was: "How much water are you drinking?" He caught me. I hadn't been focusing on my water intake, and my body was reacting to the low fluid intake.

If we deprive our bodies of fluid, our bodies will tell us. I certainly felt that low-fluid indicator a few days ago when we were in the deserts of Israel – incredibly dry and scorching hot. In fact, I heard that some of our pilgrims got blisters on the bottom of their feet just from walking on the hot mud between taking off their shoes and walking to the Dead Sea waters. And the Dead Sea certainly doesn’t provide the opportunity to have your thirst quenched – it is the saltiest water you’ve ever tasted. That speaks volumes for my Mom’s antidote to a sore throat “Take some warm salted water and gargle!” A sore throat wouldn’t stand a chance of survival in that Dead Sea water!!

I knew this would happen to me after having been where Jesus walked and traveled and ministered. I had to look at a map for today's post! Remember the Samaritan woman that Jesus met at the well? Remember His words to her in John 4:14 "Whoever drinks this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life."

Here's what I discovered about the location of Sychar (where the well was located) compared to our travels. The road from Jerusalem to Galilee lays through Samaria, but Jews often went around to avoid the Samaritans. (Cool map HERE of the route around. It’s a long way just to avoid people you don’t like!!). BUT, our loving Lord went this way because the Samaritans needed to hear him. He could have gone around but didn’t. Sychar was ancient Shechem and was the capital of Samaria. This is where Abram first came when he arrived into Canaan from Babylonia. (Genesis 12:6)

Jesus was tired after a long day of walking. Jesus was fully human and fully God and as fully human, experienced the same things we do. The sixth hour would have been around noon–the hottest part of the day. (My fellow pilgrims -- remember how hot it was at the Jordan River and the Dead Sea? Can you imagine how thirsty Jesus was there in Sychar?)

The woman at the well was unusual. Mostly women came together during the early part of the day for water for the day. Maybe she ran out of water or had a sudden need or maybe she was an outcast. Like a bar today, the well was a gathering place, a place to exchange news and gossip. It was also a place where prostitutes hung out. A Rabbi never spoke to women in public, not even their own wives or daughters. Some even closed their eyes when passing a woman on the street. Furthermore, Jews never asked favors from Samaritans. Jesus was breaking all the rules -- and showing us ALL how to live.

Also, Jews believed they would become ceremonially unclean if they used a drinking vessel handled by a Samaritan since they held the belief all Samaritans were unclean.

Jesus made a simple request to the woman....water. He makes a simple request of us....faith. Jesus often speaks to us similarly: “If you knew….” on a quest to draw us closer to him, to investigate more, to pray more. If we deprive our souls of spiritual water, our souls will give us low spiritual fluid indication. We’ll know we're low if we're not taking in the "living water" that Jesus offers us. The indicators of "spiritual thirst" might be, if we’re heavy hearted, sad, weary, depressed, edgy, poor decisions being made, frazzled nerves, quick to speak words of anger or unbelief. When those warning signs are indicated on our spiritual fluid indicator" -- it's time to "replenish and re-fluid" from God's "living waters" fountain of hope, love, joy, peace, and wisdom -- always the place to go to for refreshment -- it's a fountain that NEVER runs dry!

Psalm 42:1 "As the deer pants for the waters, so my soul longs after You, oh God!"

I’m really thirsty right now. It's time to fill up on those springs of living water that will never run dry! Come on in -- join me -- the water is fine!