Last night for 12 hours we were without water to our home. It was a hassle. I couldn’t shower, the dirty clothes needed to wait and I couldn’t have my evening cup of tea. This was an inconvenience, not a disaster.
I wasn’t well last night. I felt thick headed, my mouth was dry, I was nauseous and I needed to use the bathroom…
The little things like turning on a tap are what get to us. A few years ago I would regularly go camping for the odd conference. These camping trips were well organised with stand-pipes dotted about for supplying water and an ablutions block. But for cooking I had to fetch water. I would walk from my tent site to the tap nearest, which always felt like a trek, fill a couple of 25 litre jerry cans and walk back. That would do me for the day’s cooking, washing (don’t like to shower on camp) and drinking water. Some campers had mobile homes with fitments allowing them to drive to the tap and fill water butts with enough water for the whole weekend. Some made several trips a day because they had smaller containers.
Overnight last night I was reminded of this as I went and pumped water from the wellpoint in the garden (sulphurous and very much NOT drinking water) into jerry cans again for the toilet cysterns in the house. It struck me that this simple luxury we take for granted is an absolute necessity we cannot do without.
Jesus didn’t stand up and announce that He was the living egg and chips. He didn’t reveal himself to be the beer of life. Water. Simple water.
We cannot live more than a couple of days without water. Spiritually we need to be filled constantly with the Living Water of Jesus’ Spirit. Why? Because we leak.
Imagine taking a nail and driving it through a 25 litre container about an inch from the bottom and leaving it there. Then fill the can with water. You might not notice immediately, but the water immediately begins to flow out of the hole. The pressure from the air surrounding it forces the water out. Gradually the water all drains out until it reaches the level of the nail, and it levels off there. You can’t stop the flow on a camp site, you need to simply return to the source and top up. Regularly.
Spiritually it’s no different.
Top up or dry up. And Sundays aren’t enough alone. We don’t drive big mobile homes with enough storage space for weeks at a time. But we do have a link to the source. What we need to do is to plug ourselves into the source and we can keep going back as often as we need – that tap never dries out.
Jesus would withdraw from the disciples and go alone to pray. He needed to top up. If Jesus needed to, how much more do we.