There is a clip from Sesame Street that I vividly remember. It is set in a desert in the middle of which, there is a refreshment stand (I know, right?). When out of the sandy hills, a man comes staggering up to the muppet manning (?) the booth. His clothes are tattered and he is exhausted from the hot sun. He slumps onto the stand and the first word out of his mouth is “agua”.
Great, it’s a Spanish-speaking man! The muppet does not understand! “A-g-u-a”, the Espanol says again and points to his throat for emphasis. The muppet remains flabbergasted. The desert man tries again. The exchange goes on and gets more ridiculous at each turn. At one point, the Spanish man, desperate, had started miming, pretending to dive into the sea and making swimming motions with his hands.
Unfortunately, the story doesn’t end too well. The stand owner gets so tired from trying to guess what the poor Hispanic wanted that he whips out a pitcher of water and calmly takes a drink for himself. The desert wanderer promptly goes berserk. And I don’t know if he ever got to take that much-needed gulp.
We all know what it’s like to be thirsty. Your throat dries up, your mouth feels like cotton, and your brain shuts down. They say you can go for weeks without eating but without water, you’re lucky to last a few days. What more if the water was right in front of us but for one reason or another, we couldn’t get it?
What if I told you that we are more like that Spanish dude than we think? That we are lost in the desert, dried up and searching for that one thing that could quench our deep thirst? We look for that ‘magic potion’ everywhere and more oftentimes than not, end up in the wrong places. But hey, we find a temporary fix right?. The world is full of temporary fixes, after all. And yes, they satisfy the thirst for a moment.
But it only lasts for a moment. Sooner or later, the thirst comes back. Oftentimes, stronger and more demanding than before.
Yep, our lives could feel like the desert, never-ending, unforgiving and a little harsh, to say the least.
But guess what?
Here’s some great news.
We’ve all got something far better than a refreshment stand. Unlike the muppet, it’s concessionaire won’t make you work for your drink. This stand far surpasses even the most majestic oasis this world can offer. Think of the grandest waterfalls that you have ever seen and even that abundance is nothing compared to this.
This is not your ordinary kind of water. It goes beyond just quenching your physical thirst. This one goes into the very depths of your being, into every fiber of your soul. It penetrates every nerve ending, the very tips of your toes. Once your lips touch this, you will never be the same again.
Not only is it free, it also never runs out. It’s ever-flowing, ready for you to drink from it as deeply as you can. Today, tomorrow, again and again and again.
Its the source of ever-living water, the fountain of life, the spring of true salvation.
It’s the sweetest name you’ll ever know. The one name you’ll never want to let go….
Jesus. Yup, nothing and no one else.
John 4:14 “But whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Can you imagine that? No more thirsting. No more wandering around. Never again will you be lost, unsure of yourself and in search of the next quick fix. And what’s that? Eternal life? A life in the kingdom of God, in the presence of the Almighty, forever and ever! I ask you, does Gatorade even come close?
Isaiah 12:3, “With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.”
There are many wells where we can draw waters of salvation from. The awesome thing is, you don’t need to climb a hill with your friend Jack and a pail of water to do so. These are simple, practical things you can do everyday.
First is by reading the Bible. His Word speaks Life, breathes Truth and lights the Way.
Second is by prayer. Prayer is your communication time with God through our Lord Jesus. There is power in prayer. It always changes something. (Your heart, for instance!)
The third is by simply understanding and reveling in His grace. Grace is the gift of God to us through His son Jesus, who died on the cross for our sins. Because of what Jesus did, you are no longer a sinner, instead you are perfect in His eyes. And you can sin or fall or betray or desert Him over and over again and still, it will never change the way He sees you. It will never change the way He loves you.
Here’s what you can do the next time you are tired from work, upset over family matters or in cahoots over a relationship. Just when you are ready to lash out, or give up, or do something you might regret later on, just hang in there one moment. Perhaps you can consider this just for kicks…Try praying as David prayed,
“O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water” (Ps 63:1)
And watch Him and oh, just wait for Him when He comes… He will swoop you up in His mighty embrace and will never ever let you go.
And when He does, oh, I’ve got to tell you, it will be incredible! He will fill you up, leave no wound unhealed, no worry un-soothed, and no fear un-quieted. His presence will blow you over and blow you away because He is God and He is love.
Do you hear Him now? Has He been calling you? Maybe you have been too busy with work, or with everyday stuff that you just can’t hear Him yet. And that’s understandable. This world has a cunning way of distracting us from His call.
Tell you what… The next time you feel a longing, a thirst that seems to go beyond just a physical need…when nothing this earth has to offer can no longer cut it, take this as your cue.
It’s time to drink and let Jesus “become the water of your soul”.
“Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life” – Rev 22:17