Are you Thirsty?
By Zelda Dominguez
“As the deer pants for streams of water, so I long for you, O God. I thirst for God, the living God”
– Psalm42:1-2a (NLT)
Have you ever been dehydrated? I have, one year at the Harvest Crusade. We went early to see the bmx riders and other exhibitions out on the parking lot. It was a hot day much like the recent heat wave. As we waited for the gates to open, people gathered closer to be first to enter. Suddenly it was shoulder to shoulder people. By this time we had been there all day and I hadn’t taken water with me to drink. I started to not feel myself. I felt dizzy, had a headache, and was nauseated. I squatted down and my sister told others around me that I was feeling ill. I remember people pouring water over me and giving me water to drink. I ended up missing the whole crusade that year because I was taken to the first aid area where they cared for me, along with all the others who didn’t drink water that day.
I’d like to tell you what happens when we are physically dehydrated. The body needs water to basically function. By weight our body is about 72% water. Every healing and life giving process that happens in our body happens through water. Every cell uses water. Our brain is over 80 % water and controls each and every process that happens inside the body. Water performs many important internal functions, from maintaining body temperature; to transporting vitamins, minerals, hormones, and other substances; to lubricating joints, eyes, and intestines. We can survive for only a matter of days without water. Thirst serves as an automatic reminder of that fact—and, therefore, plays a crucial role in keeping us alive. If you feel thirsty, then your body is already dehydrated and you need to get some water in your system. Lack of water to the brain can cause numerous symptoms, including problems with focus, memory, brain fatigue and brain fog, as well as headaches, sleep issues, anger, depression, and many more. People think, like I use to, that they can drink soda, coffee, milk, or juice instead of water and get the same level of hydration. This is simply not true.
Did you know in very much the same way we can get spiritually dehydrated? Are you discouraged, weak and discontent, frustrated with life, irritable, confused, hopeless? Maybe you feel lonely, or mad things didn’t go as you thought they should. Perhaps you feel sick of feeling like you do and can’t sleep. Or perhaps you are so over having relationships after relationships that don’t work out. Jesus says in John 7:37, “if any man (woman) thirst, let him come to me and drink.” God created us for relationship with Him. Only He fills the void of our emptiness and discontentment. Nothing else can take that place or substitute. Only His Living Water can satisfy our thirst.
Let’s look at a story about a woman unsatisfied with life and discontent after multiple relationships. In John 4 of the bible, Jesus was traveling with his disciples when he felt led to go through Samaria. Historically the Jews and the Samaritans had intense tension and hatred towards each other, so they both avoided contact. In verse 4, it states, “He needed to go through” Samaria. There were other roads, but that day Jesus had a divine appointment with a Samaritan woman unbeknownst to her. Jesus was weary from his journey. It could have been a hot day, walking for miles, since it was already noon. Jesus, although fully God, was also fully man. So like us, he felt physical limitations, emotions, hurt, and disappointment. Jesus sat by the well when here comes the Samaritan woman.
Generally, the women came to gather water in groups either earlier or late in the day, to avoid the sun’s heat. But the fact that she came alone and during noon time, may indicate public shame since she had a reputation and was an outcast. This explains the reason why she isolated herself. She reaches the well and perhaps she sees Jesus sitting there, but because of multiple reasons she wouldn’t approach or speak to him. One reason could have been that she could tell from his clothes he was a Jew, also a Rabbi. Jews didn’t associate with her culture, nor did rabbis speak to a woman – especially to one with her reputation. Jesus broke down all the traditional barriers to accept her as she was, and offer her a chance to experience a fresh new start in life. He met her right where she was at and – think about it – Jesus went to her!
He asks her for a drink and she’s shocked that he would speak to her. He then explains that God’s Spirit is like living water and that anyone who drinks of it will never be thirsty again. The woman told Jesus she wanted some of that water. Now, she had been married five times and was currently living with a guy… Jesus knew her circumstance and her past. He knew she had been trying to fill that desire to be loved with other things and people. She was dissatisfied, discouraged, and discontent.
Jesus demonstrated God’s love for all who have been rejected or condemned. Those who feel like an outcast, unloved, and empty. Jesus didn’t ignore her past, but confronted her sin in a way that made her want to seek God’s forgiveness. The Samaritan woman put her faith in Jesus as He revealed to her who he was. He knew of all her faults. This can be a great encouragement to us. No matter what we have done in the past or present, God still offers us his unconditional acceptance and love. She responded to him, and he forgave and filled her so she would never thirst again. And she went out and told others of the Messiah that offered her new life. Her thirst was quenched that day.
I pray that if you find yourself feeling unfulfilled and spiritually dehydrated, that you would drink.
As Jesus said, “But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I give will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life” (John 4:14 NASB).