Thirsty for Real Water: Rivers of Faith, part 1


Underwater in the Bahamas

"If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him." (John 7:37-38 NIV)

When we are thirsty, nothing satisfies like an ice-cold drink of water.

Imagine walking through a tropical forest. The sweltering humidity is bearing down on you. Your lips are painfully cracked and your body is caked with mud. Your immediate need is not for a good meal, nor shelter from the elements. Rather, you have an insatiable thirst for water. Your only thoughts are centered on "My kingdom for a drink". You would give anything to satisfy this unquenchable thirst that has become your sole obsession.

All of a sudden you notice a lake filled with mouth-watering water. For some reason you know that this water is pure and undefiled, safe to drink. You stumble towards it and jump into the lake, head first. Your senses are revived and you feel yourself completely surrounded by bliss. As you make your way farther and farther down the lake, you drink the water to your heart's content.

As you swim, you notice that the grime that was glued to your body is gradually being washed away. Your thirst also has become satisfied, but for reasons you don't fully understand, you dive deeper and deeper. Without knowing what you are doing, you begin to breathe the water. That's when you realize that this water is unlike any you have ever encountered. How is this possible, breathing water! You are not a fish!

You feel a presence and you turn around. Though you see no one, the presence can be clearly felt.

"Who are you?" You demand, but the sound of your voice surprises you, as no one has ever been able to make clear sounds in water.

"I am the Lord, who heals you." (Ex 15:26 NIV)

Wow! Is this why you feel so rejuvenated? You are in the very presence of your Maker! A thought comes to mind: "Why are you doing this for me?"

"I have loved you… with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself." (Jer 31:3NLT)

You suddenly feel overwhelmed. "How is it possible that you love me?" And in your panic, you begin to swallow a bit too much of the water.

"Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown." (Isa 43:1-2 NLT)

Right then and there you meet the One called Creator and Redeemer. Once you have experienced Him, you will long for more and more opportunities to be with Him and you will understand what He means when He said "'If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.' By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified." (John 7:37-39 NIV)

It's amazing, isn't it, this idea of God taking up residence in us, filling us with streams of living water! We will never be alone again. God is with us and in us, and with Him, we have power to raise the very dead. We will never feel dirty again, even though we will tend to wander away from time to time. We will no longer feel spiritually thirsty, for the only One who can satisfy us lives in us. We will no longer feel lost, for He guides us-but only if we let Him! We will no longer feel broken, for His very presence restores us.

This is all available to those who believe in Jesus. Yes, faith is the foundation for our victory. It is also the foundation of our relationship with the One we call the Lover of our soul. Without Him no one would ever be able to experience these "streams of living water."

Over the next few weeks we will continue to swim into the depths of this unfathomable but true relationship with our Maker, and on the way we will discover what faith truly means. It's time we set aside our doubts and instead, invest in the One who supplies us with living water.

Dive in! These waters are very pleasant, and they will surely satisfy all of your needs.

The first time I ever snorkelled was beside the pier, near my hotel in Nassau, Bahamas. As myriads of fish welcomed me in their midst, I experienced something very similar to what I've described. Every day I returned to the same spot, for it always refreshed me after a day in the sweltering humidity. But this unforgettable experience is insignificant compared to the living waters that my Heavenly Father has provided for me. I yearn to spend more and more time with Him, who has also become my everything.

He is most definitely worth getting to know. Won't you join me in this diving expedition?

Rob Chaffart

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