When Your Soul’s A Little Thirsty and the Water Tastes Like Crap

I’m pretty excited about this first post in the Inspiring Life for Moms series, based on My Father’s World Kindergarten curriculum units! Thought you don’t need to be using My Father’s World – or homeschooling at all for that matter – in order to get something out of these devotions, I wanted to do something to be deliberate to be learning right alongside my kids. These devotionals are my way of digging a little deeper, and hopefully sharing something that will bless you. Each week, we have a Scripture verse to focus on so that will be the prompt for these devotionals.

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“On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let Him come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.'” John 7:37 – NKJV

I have to be honest – the water flowing out of me this week has not seemed very living.

In fact, its a lot more like a bucket of water. It seems to get filled up at some point in the day but once its dried up, I’m left with a bunch of silt and junk at the bottom of my bucket.  I’ve been tired and tired of doing the things I know I should do.

Its been one of those weeks where I’ve been talking myself into doing the very basic things I need to be doing – dishes, meals, laundry, and all my energy is going into pumping myself up to love my kids the way I need to, spend time with my husband, offer hospitality, and on top of all that – I spent four days teaching and imparting at our ministry campus. I’ve gone into each “duty” feeling super empty and quite desperate, and feeling guilty for not “feeling it” and not doing the extras I normally would.

In fact, I felt so empty that even considering this whole idea of living water seemed like a drag.

I’m sure you’ve never had a day or a week or a month like that, right? 

You know, I think the problem I’m facing, spending lots of energy filling a bucket with average to crappy water and then feeling really unsatisfied at the end of the day – I don’t think its an unusual problem.

When Jesus shared that Scripture it was during a feast actually celebrating the way water flowed from the rock for the Israelites back in the day.

What a miracle, right? You’re super thirsty, some guy hits a rock and fresh, gorgeous water comes out. Definitely a miracle and something to celebrate for generations!

The second part of that story isn’t quite so glamorous… later on, the Israelites were complaining again and so Moses went to hit the rock again – but this time he didn’t do it out of obedience, he did it out of anger, frustration, desperation. He was functioningnot walking in faith.

I wonder if the ones Jesus shouted out to were in a similar place to Moses – and me. Here they are doing their celebration, going through the motions, doing all the right things. But did they have faith? Or had the actions themselves become more important that Jesus?

And what about me? I’m so aware of my responsibilities, but perhaps I’m guilty of trying to find righteousness in those responsibilities in and of themselves, and maybe that’s sucking more life out of me than giving it to me.

This living water thing – its more than a tradition or protocol – its more than doing something just because it worked in the past – its more than the daily grind.

Its about believing that the option of having something living out of our hearts – of never thirsting again – is possible and going straight to the source.

I have to be honest, even today that sounds too hard. It sounds way more simple than what I really need. And yet, I’ve experienced what its like to have that flowing from within me and something deep inside me knows that its possible. I’m fighting that desire to try to find comfort in doing what I should do or what’s worked before instead of going to the source.

And yet, in the middle of the struggle, I find comfort in this promise:

“I will always show you where to go.
    I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places—
    firm muscles, strong bones.
You’ll be like a well-watered garden,
    a gurgling spring that never runs dry.”
Isaiah 58:11 (The Message)

He not only has living water for me, but He wants to show me the way.

* * *

This is part of the My Father’s World Kindergarten series of devotionals for moms using this curriculum. The posts are my personal reflections on the Scripture that accompanies each unit.

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