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Friday, March 25, 2011

Living Water

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[March 25, 2011]   --"Jesus answered her, ‘If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, “Give me a drink”, you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.’"- John 4: 10

I find it ironic that the first teaching Jesus offers the Samaritan woman at the well is that it is she who should be asking him for something.  Jesus has just asked her for a drink of water, and she has note the peculiarity of this request since he is a Jew and she a Samaritan.  And now, Jesus is telling her she should be asking something of him.  I find it ironic because, if there is anything we modern American Christians are good at, it is asking Jesus for stuff.  We ask for stuff all the time; money, health, wealth, jobs, relationships, political and athletic victories, etc... We have no problem asking Jesus for things.  If he returned, the line would form pretty quickly to ask him for stuff.  No, this is not our problem.

Our problem is we ask for the wrong things.  What Jesus offers the Samaritan woman at the well is not something any of us would know to seek.  He offers her the living water, which, once consumed, will never need to be consumed again and will bring salvation.  This is a metaphor, of course, for the presence of Christ in one's life.  This is what we should be requesting of Jesus!  We would be wise to put aside our laundry list of desires, as if Jesus were a genie in a bottle, and focus on what he truly offers, an elixir for our souls.  Jesus can increase our faith, help us to overcome struggle and sorrow, teach us how to truly love, and save us from the dark abyss of sin.  This is what he offers, not money, not true love, not the perfect job or even an Illini victory.  I encourage you, the next time you pray, to remember who it is you are praying to, and what he believes you actually need.  Then see if maybe it has been there all along.

Prayer:  Holy God, please increase my faith and strengthen my belief, that I may be a better servant of Christ.  I want to grow in my faith and I want to learn how to love others.  I pray in Jesus' name.  Amen.

[Phil Blackburn, First Presbyterian Church]


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