“If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water…Jesus said to her, ‘Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water I will give him will become in him a spring of living water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:10, 13-14
This passage of Scripture comes from a conversation Jesus had with a woman weary of the struggles and hardships of life. She had been married five times, and was at the time of the conversation, in a relationship with a sixth man. This is a history of sinful, broken relationships and painful rejection that had deteriorated into her just trying to survive one day after the next, moving forward with an empty and hopeless heart. Into this woman’s life Jesus – as He always does – speaks exactly what is needed.
She had come to the ancient well to draw water needed to live another day. She came every day, because the water always ran out. It was a necessary, daily drudgery. Jesus asked her for a drink of the well water, but then began to reveal to her who He really was. Jesus tells her that if she understood who he really was, she would ask Him for a drink – but a drink of living water. Jesus tells her what He can give her will quench her thirst forever, and will become a spring in her soul, over-flowing her heart, and leading to eternal life!
Jesus was speaking of the time soon to come, when He would send His Holy Spirit to indwell the hearts of every person that believes in Jesus Christ as their Savior (Matthew 28:20b, Acts 2). When we confess our sins and express our faith in Jesus Christ, we are “asking for a drink of living water.” We are calling out to Jesus that we do not have the strength to handle the struggles of this life. We are admitting that we have ruined our lives through sin, selfishness, and rebellion. We believe that only Jesus has what we know we need.
This analogy is lived out every day all across America. People work hard every day: waking early to get the kids ready, dropping them at school or daycare, fighting traffic to work, working through the ups and downs of the work day, reversing the process, helping kids with school work, paying the bills, etc, etc. Often at the end of the day, whatever was in the tank at the beginning of the day is spent. There is an intense feeling of emptiness, a sense of not being able to face the next day, because you have nothing left to give. This despair often leads to alcoholism, drug abuse, anger, abandonment of family, and other futile attempts to relieve the pressure of life and find meaning in the struggle. It’s more than busyness; this is choosing to live life your own way in rebellion against Jesus Christ. This is not a struggle unique to modern humanity. This is the same struggle as the woman at the well.
Jesus beaks into this daily struggle, into this woman’s life, and tells her that if she will come to Him, she will never thirst again. When we stop striving on our own, and instead humble ourselves before Jesus our Savior, He will fill our hearts with His Spirit. As a believer in Jesus Christ the power of God Himself rises up to fill our hearts to overflowing every day. In a supernatural way, when we have no more patience, patience is supplied. When we have no more love, love rises up. When we step toward despair, the light of hope shines in our hearts. When we feel things are about to spin out of control, God’s Spirit will strengthen your hand to hold tight the reigns of life. This is elsewhere (Galatians 5:22-24) called the fruits of the Holy Spirit. It is the life of Jesus Christ welling up in your heart, to over-flowing, until it pours out and is evident to all. This life giving strength will never stop. Jesus will continue His saving work until eternity. I urge you today, in the midst of the struggle, call out to Jesus for living water!
May our souls be satisfied in Jesus,