The water is cut. It’s early in the morning and it’s out again. We have a bucket, so we should be fine for a while.
Eventually the bucket runs out and I go to the reservoir, only to realize that we have forgotten to fill it up. It’s almost empty and suddenly the water shortage becomes more stressful.
There is a neighbor’s well a few minutes walk away if we are in serious need, and that’s a comfort. We just prefer not to have to walk down the road and lug back buckets if we can avoid it.
I have gotten out of the habit of spending consistent time in God’s Word again, and have been starting to feel that thirst that comes when you need to “fill up”.
It made me think of our water situation. We can manage for a while with a bucket or a few basins, but eventually the daily needs build up and the water runs out. When we’ve made sure to stay on top of filling the reservoirs so that we have water the situation is better, but even still, it won’t last forever. Eventually they need to be refilled. But a well, a well that would never run dry, now that’s the surest thing of all.
I can understand the Samaritan woman at the well a little bit better now when she exclaims, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.” Who knows how far she had to walk every day to get to the well and how heavy her jars of water were on the return trip. Water that quenches thirst forever? Not having to go and draw it out of the well every day? What an amazing thing that most of us in the Western world at least, take far too much for granted.
You know who else I take for granted? The One who gives the life-giving water. I drink my fill, feel ready to tackle all of the things, and start emptying my bucket. But too often I forget my reservoirs, forget even that there is a well-spring of water just waiting for me to come back to for thirst quenching gulps or even just little sips throughout the day.
When Jesus addressed the woman at the well, He was speaking of the eternal life that would bring the ultimate refreshment to her. How often do I allow myself to be refreshed by the reminders of that truth? I go to refill my bucket at the reservoirs, realize how long it’s been since I’ve filled them and suddenly all of the things that I thought I was doing in His strength show clearly that I’ve switched back to my own strength. And usually start falling apart.
Yet by the grace of God, the well hasn’t run dry. It never will. When I admit my need and seek the source, and drink that fresh, clear, rejuvenating water I am filled again. Jesus is my source for eternal life, yet He remains the One to whom I must come in my daily need. The One who enables me to live the life that He desires for me, who realigns my perspective to see rightly and to do justly. Thank God for the Well-spring who gave Himself to give us Life.
John 4: 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”