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Chaplain's Chat 22nd March 2017

“Living Water!”

In our journey through Lent, the Lectionary readings give us a structure and themes for corporate reflection. The reading from the Sunday just past was about Jesus meeting the Samaritan woman at the well. It is a long reading, but an important one. The narrative revolves around  the importance of water.

This is a topical theme in Australia in a world that is experiencing rapid climate change. The climate seems to be becoming drier and in turn, the land becomes parched, the levels of the water-tables drop, and dam levels decline. In this situation, we are really made aware of the indispensability of water for sustaining our lives. Water is for us, a “life blood.” In the absence of water, there is drought …. and potential death.

In a similar way, we can also experience spiritual drought in our lives. We sometimes find ourselves in a desert of doubt and apathy. Nothing seems to be the way we want it to be, and frankly, it may be that in those times we really don't care. We wonder if God is listening; all we hear is the echo of our own voices as we cry out to what we perceive to be an absent God. I would suggest that just as water is necessary to sustain life and that its absence brings drought and ultimately death, so too, God's loving touch is necessary in our lives in times of spiritual drought to reinvigorate life.

The climate in Palestine in the time of Jesus was also dry. He used the importance and scarcity of water to teach the message of the gospel. When Jesus met the Samaritan woman at a well, he asked her to draw some water for him.  Having done so, he said to her:

“Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again. But anyone who drinks the water I give will never be thirsty again. The water I give people will be like a spring flowing inside them. It will bring them eternal life.”
(John 4:13-14)

Jesus was telling us that the ‘water’ that he offers us, is a “living water’ which quenches the spiritual thirst in our lives and brings our ‘drought’ to an end. There is no tap that supplies this water. This water comes from a desire to receive it from God. The ‘water’ is received simply by asking for it from Jesus and then by searching it out further in his “living word” – the bible.

I have seen pictures of a desert landscape being changed into an horizon-to-horizon bed of flowers simply by one shower of rain. 

Jesus’ living water can do the same for us. My prayer is that you may find this living water from Jesus and that your lives may blossom as a result.

God bless.

Reverend Dave