John 4:13-14 – Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 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." (NIV)
Four years ago, I went into Egypt, to Mount Sinai, or Mount Horeb — the mountain of God. I visited the place of the burning bush — the place where God spoke to Moses and declared the ground holy. The burning bush had a special significance for me, as we use the burning bush as an emblem in the Presbyterian Church. In Latin, the words are "Nec tamen consumebatur", meaning, "Nevertheless it was not consumed".
I went up this mountain on a camel and walked back down. This was the highlight of my pilgrimage.
It was from the top of the mountain that I made an observation. All around was desert. I looked down to a plateau and saw a place where there were two or three trees growing, and some bushes, bright and green. There had to be water right there, for the desert stretched for miles. The Bedouin people who live there with their sheep, shepherded by the women, scratch an existence out of this land.
The scene brought to my mind the importance of water. We can't exist without it. This is the water that Jesus first talks about in today's scripture — the water we thirst after to nourish our bodies. This water we thirst after again and again.
The living water that Jesus refers to in the second part of the scripture verse is the living water that nourishes our souls. This is the living water we thirst after and when we receive it, we never thirst again. We are told in the scripture that if we receive this, the water He gives, it will well up in us, unto eternal life. This means believers have within themselves a spring of water overflowing, welling up at last to eternal life.
I look back to that realization of the two kinds of water. The water required to make the desert bloom flows from the ground below, or it comes from the sky above.
The water of life for our souls comes from God through our belief in Jesus Christ and flows within us and from us.
Prayer: Lord, although we need to see with our eyes the desert blooming, we also need to know the living water flowing within our souls, by your Holy Spirit, giving us life everlasting, so that we will never thirst again. We thank you for this water, given us through Jesus Christ our Lord and our Saviour. Amen.